Democrats are none too happy that insurers dared to point out the obvious: insurance premiums are bound to rise for the average families if Congress piles on regulations for what insurance policies must contain and mandate that insurance companies take on those with pre-existing conditions.
This article in Politico describes the political fallout, and suggests that not only the report might be too little too late in terms of derailing legislation, that it may backfire on the industry as Democrats try to exact revenge:
White House and Senate officials hinted at the possibility of legislative payback for releasing a report Democrats described as deeply flawed and self-serving. At the very least, officials said, it will help Democrats close ranks behind the Finance Committee bill, which had come under fire from the progressives as too moderate.
They also predicted liberal lawmakers will go harder after the insurers, perhaps by proposing a cap on premiums or solidifying support for the government insurance plan.
“They have opened themselves up,” said a senior Senate Democratic aide. “It is an incredibly stupid strategic blunder. If you are going to fire a shot like this, you fire a good shot.”
So the White House and Senate staffers may actually change legislation, not to address any concerns raised by the findings, but to punish the industry for daring to step out of line. Is this really how policy is supposed to be crafted? Isn’t there something profoundly disturbing about government officials threatening to change policy to harm someone who exercises their first amendment rights?