Florida Sen. [crscore]Marco Rubio[/crscore] called on congressional leaders in a letter Tuesday to repeal an Affordable Care Act (ACA) provision allowing for the potential bailout of health insurance companies that have lost money under Obamacare.
The presidential hopeful suggested a policy rider removing the risk corridors provision be added to the omnibus appropriations bill — a crucial piece of legislation that could lead to a government shutdown if it isn’t passed by its Dec. 11 deadline.
“If the only way ObamaCare can continue is for taxpayers to bail out health insurers that lose money because of it, that’s as good an indication as any that the whole law should be repealed and replaced,” he wrote. “It is our responsibility to completely shield the U.S. taxpayer from a deal in the Omnibus that might reimburse health insurers retroactively for these losses or any other future losses.
Insurers losing money under the president’s landmark legislation recently came into the spotlight as UnitedHealth Group, one of the nation’s largest insurance providers, threatened to pull out of the ObamaCare exchanges after sustaining sizable losses.
During an appearance on CNBC, Ipsita Smolinski, an analyst and managing director at Capitol Street, said ACA has resulted in insurance companies losing around $2.5 billion since 2014.
While insurers asked the ObamaCare risk corridor program for $2.87 billion, the Department of Health and Human Services announced last month it will pay just $362 million.
“Let’s be clear: the reason these health insurance companies are enduring a financial loss is that ObamaCare is a disastrous law,” Rubio said. “It broke the promise to lower health insurance premiums and allow Americans to keep their health care. Now the very architects of this law are attempting to place taxpayers on the hook.”
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