UPDATED: Texas: 1,205,174 QHPs...plus 4! (But how many of the new enrollees will PAY???)
The last official 2015 QHP selection count for the state of Texas was 1,205,174 people as of February 22.
It looks like I can update this to 1,205,178 today!
One day after announcing his plan to run for president and “repeal every word of Obamacare,” Ted Cruz confirmed that he plans on using Obamacare’s new state-level marketplace to enroll in coverage himself.
Because Cruz’s wife Heidi is joining his campaign full-time, she’s going on unpaid leave from her current job at Goldman Sachs. Earlier this week, CNN reported that the couple will lose the employer-sponsored plan through the company, and speculated that Cruz would likely be in the market for a new health care plan.
“We will presumably go on the exchange and sign up for health care and we’re in the process of transitioning over to do that,” Cruz told The Des Moines Register on Tuesday.
Actually, I think that as a member of Congress, Cruz may be required to utilize the District of Columbia exchange the way that all Congressional staffers are, as opposed to Healthcare.Gov, so technically that's the exchange whose tally should be bumped up by 4, but whatever.
I'm gonna leave it at that. The irony here speaks for itself, although I'm not gonna go after Cruz too much since plenty of people comply with laws that they don't personally agree with (although I'm sure that the Cruzes are grateful to be able to move from one job to another without having to worry about them or either of their young children being denied coverage due to a pre-existing condition, for example, or that Mrs. Cruz won't be charged more for her gender and that their kids will be able to stay on their plan until they're 26 years old if necessary...)
You can learn more about the new healthcare environment of the Cruz family by visiting any of the following handy websites!
UPDATE: Hmmmm....looks like I might have let Sen.
Crooz Cruise Cruze Cruz off the hook a bit too easily after all:
In other words, Cruz "could purchase coverage in the outside market but would get no subsidy from the FEHBP program," Tim Jost clarified for ThinkProgress, referring to the acronym for the federal health care program. "It seems like the primary other option he would have is to take advantage of COBRA through his wife, though he'd be forgoing the employer contribution. He could also buy non-group coverage," Larry Levitt, Senior Vice President at the Kaiser Family Foundation, said. Cruz could also potentially purchase insurance through his presidential campaign's presumptive health care insurance. In those instances, however, he would have had to give up his employer's contribution and likely pay more for insurance than he is now being charged under Obamacare.
So let's see...Ted Cruz hates the Affordable Care Act. HATES it. Feels it's an abomination, unconstitutional, a plague upon the land etc etc, to the point that he helped shut down the United States Federal Government a year and a half ago purely because he thought doing so would stop "Obamacare" from moving forward (ironically, ACA exchange funding wasn't impacted by the shutdown anyway).
So, when it came time for him to choose his new healthcare policy for his family and himself, which option did he go with?
- "Keep his plan that he liked" via the COBRA extension allowed for through his wife's (now former) employer
- Enroll in a private policy of his choice directly via a pro-business, profit-based insurance company, paying the Fair Market Value as dictated by the Invisible Hand of the Free Market
- Enroll in coverage via his own campaign's group policy
- Enroll in a policy via the Affordable Care Act healthcare exchange (which wouldn't even exist anymore if his $24 billion government shutdown had achieved it's goal of pulling the plug on the ACA)