Rubio: End O-Care ‘bailouts’ of insurers

Greg Nash

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) proposed a bill on Tuesday that would eliminate a provision of ObamaCare that "allows for taxpayer-funded bailouts of insurance companies at the Obama Administration’s sole discretion."

The bill would repeal the Affordable Care Act’s "risk corridors" clause, whereby insurance companies that take on high-risk consumers are partially reimbursed from those insurers whose pools end up being less risky.

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Insurance companies must pay into a federal fund to participate in the exchanges, and the law transfers the money from lower risk plans to higher risk plans to keep premium prices stable.

However, Rubio and his co-sponsors, Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Mike Lee (R-UT), Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Rand Paul (R-KY) and David Vitter (R-LA), say the provision gives the Obama administration far more leeway to reimburse insurers and should be repealed.

“The American people are sick of Washington picking winners and losers, especially since the chosen losers often end up being taxpayers who foot the bills for Washington’s mistakes,” Rubio said in a statement. “Washington’s bailout culture must end, and eliminating ObamaCare’s blank check for a bailout of insurance companies is a common sense step to protect taxpayers when ObamaCare fails.”

The Rubio bill could affect the rollout of the Affordable Care Act, as insurers stuck with high-risk consumers might drop out of the exchanges, or raise premiums to make up for losses.