Statement of ACAP on Tax Reform Plan
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 30, 2017
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Jeff Van Ness, (202) 204-7515; firstname.lastname@example.org
STATEMENT OF ACAP ON TAX REFORM PLAN
WASHINGTON—Margaret A. Murray, Chief Executive Officer of the Association for Community Affiliated Plans (ACAP), today made the following statement on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which includes a repeal of the individual mandate for health insurance and elimination of a host of tax deductions for individuals, including deductions for state and local taxes and medical expenses, likely to force future cuts to Medicaid and Medicare.
“ACAP and its member Safety Net Health Plans have urged Congress to remove the components of this bill that are harmful to health care. Because these provisions remain in the legislation, we are left no option but to oppose this bill as it stands – especially for its shortsighted repeal of the individual mandate, which will break the individual health insurance market.
“We are especially concerned about the individual mandate provision because we’ve tried guaranteed issue without a mandate before. It led to a collapse of the market every single time. New Jersey, Iowa, South Dakota, Washington, and others have all tried guaranteed issue without a mandate. Each market failed.
“Research by Wakely Consulting has suggested that a carefully-balanced set of policies could potentially stabilize a market that utilizes guaranteed issue, but no such set of policies is in place here.
“It’s often said that one of the great things about vesting oversight powers in the states rather than the Federal government is that we get the benefits of the laboratory of democracy – we learn what works and what doesn’t. It’s hard to find a clearer lesson than guaranteed issue doesn’t work without a mandate, or something that has a similar effect. Every time, premiums have skyrocketed and insurers have fled the market.
“What’s the value in federalism if we willfully ignore the lessons it provides?
“Accordingly, we oppose this bill, and call on Senators of both parties to vote no. We remain, as ever, ready and willing to work with Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle to craft a solution that strengthens, not shreds, the individual health insurance market.”
ACAP represents 61 Safety Net Health Plans, which provide health coverage to more than 21 million people in 29 states. Safety Net Health Plans serve their members through Medicaid, Medicare, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), the Marketplace and other health programs. For more information, visit www.communityplans.net.
# # #