2018 MIDTERM ELECTION

Time: D H M S

Michigan

According to the state administration, there are roughly 477,000 Michiganders who qualify for Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

Cue FOX News and Breitbart's conspiracy theorists...

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Beneficiaries with Healthy Michigan Plan Coverage: 487,190
(Includes beneficiaries enrolled in health plans and beneficiaries not required to enroll in a health plan.)

*Statistics as of December 15, 2014 
*Updated every Monday at 3 p.m.

In all seriousness, obviously that 477K eligibility figure could be off; I've heard other estimates as high as 500,000, for instance.

The point is that the Medicaid expansion well in Michigan, along with many other states, is already running dry less than a year into the program (and in Michigan's case, less than 9 months into the program).

Yup, my wife and I went ahead and manually renewed our own private healthcare policy via HC.gov this morning here in the Wolverine State. We had already used the window shopping/browsing feature ("See Plans & Prices") and determined that in our case, sticking with the same plan through the same company made the most sense for us.

Now, here's where things get interesting: For 2014 we qualified for a small tax credit. For 2015, while our projected taxable income is expected to be pretty much identical to what we had projected a year earlier, our tax credit went up by $61 per month.

The policy itself also did go up by $93/month, but due to our tax credit also increasing, our net cost ends up being just $32/month more. Don't get me wrong, I'm not thrilled about having to pay $384/year more on top of what's already a pretty steep rate, but the point is that for some people, their tax credits are increasing next year (ie, meaning a lower net premium increase than the official rate increase would indicate).

According to the state administration, there are roughly 477,000 Michiganders who qualify for Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

As of December 8th...

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Beneficiaries with Healthy Michigan Plan Coverage: 474,372
(Includes beneficiaries enrolled in health plans and beneficiaries not required to enroll in a health plan.)

*Statistics as of December 8, 2014 
*Updated every Monday at 3 p.m.

Now, obviously that 477K eligibility figure could be off (I had previously heard estimates as high as 500,000).

According to the state administration, there are roughly 477,000 Michiganders who qualify for Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. Well, guess what?

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Beneficiaries with Healthy Michigan Plan Coverage: 469,698
(Includes beneficiaries enrolled in health plans and beneficiaries not required to enroll in a health plan.)

*Statistics as of November 24, 2014 
*Updated every Monday at 3 p.m.

Now, obviously that 477K eligibility figure could be off (I had previously heard estimates as high as 500,000). The point is, the Medicaid expansion well in Michigan, along with many other states, is already running dry less than a year into the program (and in Michigan's case, less than 8 months in).

UPDATE: Hmmmm...ok, that's a first: According to today's update, the number enrolled in the Healthy Michigan program has actually dropped by around 8,500 people over the past week:

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Yup, that's another 16,000 Michiganders who are royally hosed if the Republican Party gets their way and repeals the ACA. The total is now up to around 662,000 people state-wide if you combine Medicaid expansion and those receiving QHP tax credits:

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Beneficiaries with Healthy Michigan Plan Coverage: 449,949
(Includes beneficiaries enrolled in health plans and beneficiaries not required to enroll in a health plan.)

*Statistics as of November 10, 2014 

Over at Eclectablog, my friend Amy Lynn Smith has posted an eloquent, politely-worded open letter to newly-reelected Republican Michigan Governor Rick Snyder.

Her point is simple: While progressives may hate much of what he's done in his first term, unlike so many of his ultra-right wing nutbag colleagues, Gov. Snyder has at least shown the occasional moment of decency. Setting up a state-run ACA exchange for Michigan to ward off the fallout from a harmful SCOTUS decision on the King vs. Burwell case would be another such opportunity, which would play directly off of his successful (if belated) push to expand Medicaid for almost half a million Michiganders.

Read the whole thing.

Last week I crunched the numbers and pointed out that if the Republican Party ever successfully completes repealing the Affordable Care Act, tearing it out "root & branch" as Mitch McConnell is so fond of putting it, that 638,000 Michiganders would lose their healthcare coverage in one shot.

Today, that number has climbed 8,617 higher:

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Beneficiaries with Healthy Michigan Plan Coverage: 433,469
(Includes beneficiaries enrolled in health plans and beneficiaries not required to enroll in a health plan.)

*Statistics as of October 27, 2014 
*Updated every Monday at 3 p.m.

Yup. We're up to over 646,000 Michigan residents who'd be pretty much screwed if the GOP gets its way.

Last week the "Healthy Michigan" program (our name for Obamacare Medicaid expansion) had reached around 415,000 enrollees. Today it was announced that this number is around 10,000 higher:

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Beneficiaries with Healthy Michigan Plan Coverage: 424,852
(Includes beneficiaries enrolled in health plans and beneficiaries not required to enroll in a health plan.)

*Statistics as of October 20, 2014 
*Updated every Monday at 3 p.m.

Obviously this is fantastic news; the state is up to 88% of the 477,000 Michiganders estimated to be eligible for the program.

However, when you add in the 213,000 residents of Michigan who are receiving tax credits via private healthcare policies through the Affordable Care Act...aka "Obamacare"...that's around 638,000 people who would lose their coverage if the Republican Party were to successfully repeal the law, which they've been dead-set on doing for 4 years now.

Here's the good news: The "Healthy Michigan" program, Michigan's name for ACA Medicaid expansion, is up to over 415,000 enrollees, or 87% of the total eligible for the program. Hooray!!

Now here's the bad news: If the Republican Party has their way, every single one of those people will have their brand-new coverage yanked away from them...along with an additional 240,000 or more people (including myself) who are enrolled in private policies thanks to the Affordable Care Act.

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Beneficiaries with Healthy Michigan Plan Coverage: 415,504
(Includes beneficiaries enrolled in health plans and beneficiaries not required to enroll in a health plan.)

*Statistics as of October 13, 2014 
*Updated every Monday at 3 p.m.

Combine the two, and that's over 650,000 Michiganders who will be royally screwed if Republicans get their way, or over 6.5% of the entire population of the state.

This is simply appalling.

This story is beyond disgusting. The Michigan Republican Party has mailed out a hit piece on John Fisher the Democratic candidate for Michigan’s 61st House district. The mailer asks the recipient to call a phone number to complain about Fisher’s support of the Affordable Care Act. The number they give rings at the bedside of Fisher’s mother, 91-year-old Isabel Marie Kramb, who is in hospice care with congestive heart failure.

Read the whole piece.

OK, I'll be frank, this has little to do with the Affordable Care Act itself. Michigan's state legislature has already (grudgingly) passed the ACA's Medicaid expansion program (we call it "Healthy Michigan" here, and it's been very successful).

In other words, the only directly ACA-related items likely to come up over the next couple of years are presumably a) continuing support for Medicaid expansion (not sure if it has to be renewed annually or what) and b) the outside possibility of voting on establishing our own ACA health insurance exchange in the event that the Halbig/King cases end up being upheld by the SCOTUS.

Having said that, if you support me and the work I'm doing here, I'd like to ask a personal favor of you: Please help out the woman running for representative in Michigan's 40th state house district, Mary Belden.

The official toll as of 9/22 is slightly lower, at 395K...

Healthy Michigan Plan Enrollment Statistics

Beneficiaries with Healthy Michigan Plan Coverage: 395,547
(Includes beneficiaries enrolled in health plans and beneficiaries not required to enroll in a health plan.)

*Statistics as of September 22, 2014

...but there's an even more recent figure given today, as GOP Governor Rick Snyder tries to take credit for the program (note that the article doesn't mention "Obamacare" or "the Affordable Care Act" anywhere in it):

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Just over 400,000 low-income adults in Michigan have signed up for Healthy Michigan, the state’s Medicaid expansion program.

In addition, the original estimate of the maximum eligible number of MI residents was apparently a bit high (500K); evidently the actual number is slightly lower...meaning that the percentage reached is even better by comparison:

...The state expects enrollment to eventually reach 477,000.

Back in May, you may recall that I called attention to an appallingly offensive and cruel law which the Michigan state legislature (fully controlled by the Republican Party) passed which effectively subjects up to 200 rape victims per year to cruel & unusual punishment (and/or a $500 fine) for the "crime" of being, you know, raped:

As humiliating and degrading as the "rape insurance" law is, as Michigan political blog Eclectablog notes, it actually gets far worse, because:

OK, I suppose there have been worse U.S. Senate candidates in the past, and it's conceivable that there are worse ones this year thrown in by one major party or the other as "Some Dude®" sacrificial lambs in deep Red or Blue states. However, Terri Lynn Land is certainly the worst "serious" contender this cycle that I can think of.

Anyway, Land, who somehow managed to win statewide office twice as Michigan's SOS in the past, has apparently decided that 630,000 of her potential constituents shouldn't have decent, affordable healthcare coverage, so she's signed a pledge vowing to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

I've posted several times about the appalling shamelessness of Republican candidates trying to take credit for the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion provision (which was only possible thanks to Democrats) while continuing to badmouth the law itself.

Then there's the ones who try to take credit for Medicaid expansion finally being put into effect even though it was their own ineptness which dragged the process out...in the case of Michigan, needlessly putting hundreds of thousands of people through 3 months of unnecessary anxiety and medical risk while costing the state hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funds in the process:

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