As President Trump repeats the lie that he is responsible for relatively low premium increases on the Affordable Care Act marketplaces this year, new Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) analysis says otherwise. The analysis released this morning finds that President Trump has actually caused 2019 premiums to be 16 percent higher than they otherwise would have been absent GOP sabotage. Among the report’s key findings:
- On-exchange consumers’ premiums for 2019 are 16 percent higher than they should be because of GOP sabotage. The key drivers of these higher premiums are policies enacted by the Trump Administration and its Republican allies: “Altogether, on-exchange silver premiums in 2019 are therefore approximately 16% higher than would otherwise be the case if federal CSR payments had continued (the loss of which contributed approximately 10% to silver exchange premiums), the individual mandate penalty were still enforced, and more loosely-regulated plans were not expanding (the latter changes contributed an additional 6% to 2019 rates).”
- The repeal of the individual mandate and the expansion of junk plans has caused 2019 premiums to be 6 percent higher than they should be. Kaiser estimates that the repeal of the individual mandate penalty and the expansion of junk plans (association and short-term plans) will cause consumers to pay 6 percent more than they would absent these actions in their 2019 premiums.
- The administration’s decision to halt cost sharing reduction payments will cause on-exchange consumers to pay 10 percent more than they would have had CSRs not been stopped.
- Even consumers off the ACA exchange will pay 6 percent more because of Republican sabotage. Kaiser found, “Looking ahead to 2019, premiums in much of the country are holding flat or decreasing a bit, but unsubsidized off-exchange consumers on average will nonetheless pay an average of 6% more than they otherwise would have, if it were not for repeal of the individual mandate and expansion of more loosely regulated plans.”