Published September 12, 2011
As we wait for Obamacare to make its way to the Supreme Court, supporters of the sweeping law keep bringing up the same point.
Obamacare can mandate Americans have health insurance, because it's already a requirement to have car insurance. But a new report in USA Today may put the brakes on that argument.
The paper points out even though it's mandated in 49 states - nearly 14 percent of all drivers are uninsured... that's one in seven! New Hampshire is the only state in the union not to require auto insurance.
And those in the northeast have the lowest rates of uninsured drivers. In Maine and Massachusetts, only four percent of those behind the wheel are uncovered. In New York it's only five percent!
One of the reasons is that Massachusetts actually requires proof of insurance before you can register a vehicle. In fact, half of the states have similar laws.
But not in Mississippi - which has the highest rate of uninsured drivers.
And the trend continues across the South. About a quarter of those in New Mexico, Florida, Oklahoma and Tennessee are driving without insurance.
Why? The insurance information institute offers some reasons. "Some drivers can't afford insurance, and some drivers with surcharges for accidents or serious traffic violations don't want to pay the high premiums that result from a poor driving record...
... it is costly to track down violators of compulsory insurance laws, and unless the odds of getting caught are high and the penalties severe, drivers will continue to flout the law."
And the result is not just big bad insurance companies not getting their checks. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners says insured drivers have to pay nearly $11 billion more a year as a result.
Getting into a car accident is bad enough, but when your fellow driver is uninsured you will most likely have to pay for everything yourself. And all of these examples can easily be added to the Obamacare mandate.
People aren't going to be able to afford it, governments aren't going to be able to enforce it... and taxpayers are going to have to foot an even bigger bill in the long run.