Healthcare premiums under ObamaCare are expected to rise yet again – right before the midterm elections in November.
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With Congress failing to include a plan to shore up the health insurance exchanges in last week’s $1.3 trillion spending bill, insurance companies expect to raise rates without the government money.
The rates may rise some 10 percent for a popular middle-priced option on the insurance exchanges, and that doesn't even include the hike to premiums that will likely occur as the mandate fades away, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are pointing fingers. Democrats blame Republicans for the failure in negotiations, saying they demanded that abortion restrictions be included – something they knew would be unacceptable to Democrats.
Republicans say they negotiated in good faith and that Democrats rejected reasonable rules on abortion.
Either way, the impasse means that money to shore up the ObamaCare insurance exchanges was omitted from the $1.3 trillion spending plan that President Donald Trump signed last week.
Failure to shore up the exchanges could have repercussions at the ballot box. A recent poll in Pennsylvania showed that healthcare was a top issue for 52 percent of voters, according to Public Policy Polling.
Payments to insurers were stopped last year after Trump said they were illegal because the money hadn't been appropriated by Congress. Meanwhile, insiders say that passage of legislation to stabilize the exchanges is highly unlikely.