Republicans Sabotaging Healthcare Reform

The House Republicans passed a provision that would seriously screw middle class Americans who will receive subsidies to pay for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. Ezra described how the provision would work (to screw people):

Under their proposed policy, a family with income at 225 percent of the poverty line who needed subsidies for the first half of the year but canceled them mid-year when the husband got a better job could get a bill for more than $4,500 at the end of the year.

A more worrying example goes the other way: Imagine a family where the breadwinner makes much more than 400 percent of poverty, but loses his job late in the year. He tries to apply for subsidies so the family can keep getting health insurance but is told that he shouldn’t bother — because his total income that year will still be above 400 percent of poverty, he’ll get a bill at the end of the year forcing him to pay back the money.

Put another way, if you qualify for subsidies for part of the year, then no longer need the subsidy because your income has improved beyond 400 percent of poverty level, you have to pay back the subsidies. And, as Ezra explains, it would undermine ACA by making people (who need it the most) utterly despise it.

That blows.

And here's what blows more: the Senate Democrats might actually bring the provision up for a vote. Bad, bad, bad.