Don't tell Fox News this, but the CBO published a report on Monday that said insurance premiums were likely to rise in 2015, but at rates that were less than originally estimated. In fact, CBO says the Affordable Care Act is on target to save the federal government billions more than originally estimated. You don't have to believe me, it's on the pages of the Murdoch-owned Wall Street Journal.
That's not stopping Fox News from spouting their usual lies from the fountain of alternate truth known as American Enterprise Institute, a wholly-owned nonprofit subsidiary of David and Charles Koch. Today they took to the airwaves and the internets to tell everyone to be very, very afraid, because insurance premiums are "skyrocketing."
Choosing not to use the CBO report, Faux News instead reported on a survey of insurance brokers who said premiums were going to skyrocket. There's a couple of problems with this.
Insurance brokers hate the ACA because they were cut out as middleman.
Insurance brokers are responding to a survey that doesn't include exchange policies, because they wouldn't get reporting data on exchange policies, because...no middleman.
The rates these brokers are reporting to Morgan Stanley in their 'proprietary broker survey' are for small groups and individual policies not in the exchanges. The survey further reports that the astronomical leaps in premiums are related to the provisions of Obamacare.
Of course, we're not told which provisions, but let me hazard a guess and assume that those policies that brokers flipped into a different fiscal year to delay the impact of the ACA are now getting their quotes for their ACA-compliant policies. That means they can't foist junk policies on people with high deductibles and Health Savings Accounts that cover nothing, unless those policies are grandfathered. Since brokers worked hard to flip that business by telling employers they absolutely had to change their fiscal year, it's possible the grandfather provision is not operative, similar to what many did to individuals last year.
↓ Story continues below ↓
This survey means nothing, and means even less than nothing when put side-by-side with the success of the ACA and health insurance exchanges across the nation. What you have here is a nonsense survey where respondents actually have a vested interest in the ACA's failure.
But don't tell Fox News that. You'll shatter their bubble of illusion.