“Do-Nothing” Congress Getting Ready to “Do-Something” for Big Insurance

By D. Taylor, President UNITE HERE The 113th Congress is coming to a close with its reputation for doing nothing largely intact. The major “accomplishment” in the House was its repeated votes to repeal Obamacare, including the shutdown last year. There are problems with Obamacare that need to be fixed. But, Congress won’t do anything along those lines — unless major insurance companies ... Read more »

Breaking News! Monopoly begets Monopoly

The Avalere Health consulting firm released a study showing that “where complete data on market share of health insurance exchanges are available, Wellpoint or independent Blue Cross Blue Shield plans captured the greatest share of covered lives.” As we’ve blogged before, health insurance is already highly concentrated. Why anyone would expect exchanges to alter that fact is a little mystifying. This ... Read more »

Many DC Residents Frustrated and Still Waiting For Fixes to ACA Website

At the end of August, Washington Post columnist Robert McCarthy wrote a column titled, “Even a Harvard-educated lawyer has ‘nightmare’ with D.C. health insurance site.” McCarthy described the frustrating experience DC resident Diana Daniels had with the city’s health insurance Web site. Months of frustration. This week, we learned from McCarthy that Daniels’ experience wasn’t unique: While ... Read more »

D. Taylor: Let’s Actually Have That Honest Conversation About Fixing Obamacare

By D. Taylor, President of UNITE HERE. Cross-posted at Huffington Post. The Affordable Care Act has already helped millions of Americans gain health insurance – a big step forward. The debate over the ACA has been one of the most contentious we’ve ever seen. Fortunately, efforts to repeal it have been thwarted. Now’s the time to have a conversation about making it work for every American. At ... Read more »

Come On GOP, Get Serious

The Republican National Committee has a Labor Day message that shows why there can’t be an honest conversation in DC. It’s just a political screed filled with misrepresentations, including several of remarks from our president, D. Taylor. Our disappointment with the Administration’s lack of responsiveness is no secret, but the Republicans haven’t offered anything productive either. In fact, ... Read more »

Rep. Waxman: Another Progressive Leader Talks About Fixing The ACA

At UNITE HERE, we supported passage of the Affordable Care Act, knowing it wasn’t perfect. Our belief was that the legislation could be fixed to improve it. But, the ACA became such a political firestorm that we haven’t even been able to discuss ways to improve the law. But, that’s slowly changing. Recently, Rep. Henry Waxman, who was one of the key players in passage of the ACA when he chaired ... Read more »

Sodexo: Partial Victory, But Loophole is Still Open

The Affordable Care Act was created to increase the availability of benefits to workers nationwide. But, it doesn’t always meet that goal. One example is a provision we call the “Sodexo Loophole,” which let a major corporation use the ACA as an excuse to cut benefits for workers. Yes, to cut benefits. Sodexo, a multi-billion dollar international company, provides food service on hundreds of college ... Read more »

“They Just Lied to People”

It is important for progressives to embrace fixes to the ACA if the act is to truly change America for the better. If we progressives don’t make changes, we are liable to have the entire enterprise slowely come undone. So it is refreshing to have a progressive Democrat finally willing admit that there are problems with the Affordable Care Act that require honest discussion. For too long, Washington ... Read more »

A Fix for Rich People. Really.

Incredible as it may seem, last month, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) limited the amount that wealthy individuals will have to pay in penalties for not buying health insurance. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires individuals who don’t purchase health insurance in 2014 to pay a fine of $95 or 1% of annual income, whichever is higher. But now, individuals with incomes of roughly a quarter of ... Read more »

Congressional Round-Up: Who’ll Get a Fix?

Since passage of the Affordable Care Act, both Members of Congress and Obama Administration officials have repeatedly promised a “technical corrections” bill that would fix many of the unintended consequences that inevitably arise with such landmark legislation. However, Congressional Democrats and Obama White House staff have stated that a legislative solution to the unintended consequences ... Read more »
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