George Will says he has four questions — concerns, really — about Obamacare’s new enrollment numbers.
“I think there are really four questions,” the conservative columnist explained on Fox News’ “Special Report” Thursday night. “That’s one of them — as Sen. Barrasso has said — how many people have paid? Doesn’t count until you’ve paid. But second, only 27 percent are in the 18-to-34 group, which means adverse selection by age is still under way. And they wanted about 40 [percent] to make this fly.”
“Fifty-five percent are women,” he continued, bringing up his third concern. “Women have higher recourse to the health care system. So that’s another form of adverse selection, in addition to the youth adverse selection. And fourth, most of these people who have signed up, a clear large majority, are in the 36 states that have not established state exchanges, so they are buying this through the federal exchanges. And there are four — count ’em, four — lawsuits in various federal courts saying clearly that the plain text of the law says subsidies shall be available only through exchanges established by a state. Therefore, there are four problematic variables there.”
The Obama administration claimed Wednesday that nearly 3.3 million people had signed up for insurance through Obamcare’s online exchanges by the end of January.
“It’s very encouraging news,” Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Wednesday, touting the sign-up numbers as a huge success for the president’s health care law. “These encouraging trends show that more Americans are enrolling every day and finding quality, affordable coverage in the marketplace.”
But Will is not the only one who has questions about the administration’s numbers.
“The numbers are not as high as 3.3 million — it’s lower,” a source described as a “senior insurance industry” insider told Fox News Thursday. “Those numbers are inflated. The question is how much.”