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April 12, 2006



I was thinking the same thing today. It's not necessarily a bad thing because having insurance tied to your employer is so dumb anyway. Even if it will cause some short-term suffering while they scramble to cover what is, in my opinion, almost guarenteed to happen. But it will still be better in the long run because I do not believe a state like MA will allow people to just go without health insurance after they're kicked out by their employers. Then we have the end-around to a more single payer system that is separated from employment. My hope anyway.


I have mixed feelings about the $295 fee myself, since I also believe that tie between employment and health coverage is archaic and inefficient, but given that it's a tie that won't be severed just yet, at least with this legislation, it seems like some kind of penalty to employers not providing coverage is appropriate.

But I find Romney's position against the fee incoherent. From the New York Times:
Mr. Romney said in an interview last week that the bill's charge of $295 per worker, which would yield about $48 million a year, was "not necessary for funding" the law. He also said that $295 was "such a small figure," much less than the cost of insurance, "that it doesn't have any significant incentive value" to encourage companies to insure their workers.

On Wednesday, Mr. Romney told reporters, "There were many businesses that have been flooding my office with calls as well as business associations that were very concerned about it," adding, "There's no reason to put an extra charge on certain employers."

So, he's saying: "This fee is so small that it won't provide any significant funding or disincentive against dropping employees from coverage, but we can't put that kind of burden on our state's companies."


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