Obamacare: fewer, more expensive choices for all

**Posted by Phineas

Remember how President Obama used to prattle on about how his healthcare legislation would “bend the cost curve down?” Ah, those were the days. Now, however, it’s South Carolina’s turn to discover just what a lie that was:

The South Carolina Department of Insurance has estimated that health insurance rates in the soon-to-be-established federally facilitated exchanges will increase by 50% to 70% in the individual market and by 10% to 20% in the small group market.

The department announced Friday that it has completed its review of health insurance forms and rates for carriers that are seeking federal certification to sell in the exchange created under the Affordable Care Act.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service established July 31 as the deadline for carriers to submit changes to their federal applications.

“Due to a number of new federal requirements going into effect next year as part of the Affordable Care Act, consumers should plan for premiums to increase significantly,” said Ray Farmer, director of the S.C. Department of Insurance, in a news release.

Rate increases may be higher or lower than the estimated percentage increase based on the product chosen, age and smoking status, among other factors, Farmer said.

And just what are those “other factors?” Per BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, among them are:

“However, as has been acknowledged by many stakeholders, it is still worth noting that health insurance rates must now also factor in additional benefit requirements, new federal taxes/fees, required changes in how we calculate rates and guaranteed issue of coverage,” the company said.

In other words, government mandates (1) are jacking up rates for everyone. If this is “bending the cost curve down,” I’d hate to see what Obama’s idea of “going up” is.

This, by the way, can be seen as the “other shoe dropping” to some earlier news from the Palmetto State: a major insurer leaving the market and dumping 28,000 people on the remaining insurers, due to Obamacare.

In other words, you can’t keep the plan you liked and the plan you get will cost you more.

This is the Democrats’ idea of “making things better.”

(1) For which no Republican member of Congress voted. This anti-constitutional fiasco is a wholly-owned Democrat operation, and we need to remind people of that at every opportunity between now and election day in 2014 and 2016.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)