Without former Senator Udall’s staff to kick her around, Insurance Commissioner Marguerite Salazar isn’t keeping secret her sovereign decision to kick 190,000 folks off their health plans this year.
This is all part of President Obama’s
propaganda pledge that if you liked your insurance, you could keep it, but only through 2016. After that, you get to pay three times as much for your insurance.
But Salazar has turned into the Grinch who stole insurance and is forcing Coloradans off their plans by December instead of next year when Sen. Michael Bennet is up for reelection.
From Health News Colorado’s Katie Kerwin McCrimmon:
“She gave people the extra year last year to continue these plans and just felt that it was time now. The ACA passed in 2010 and it’s time to move people to better coverage,” said Vincent Plymell, Salazar’s spokesman.
We’re just guessing here, but suspect that if 190,000 Coloradans could have gotten better coverage, they would have done so by now.
The decision prompted outrage from Colorado’s GOP delegation in Washington, including Sen. Cory Gardner:
“I am utterly appalled by this announcement. After all of the glitches, the increased costs and premiums, and the plan cancellations that Coloradans have already endured, the idea that the Division of Insurance would choose to cancel the healthcare plans of hundreds of thousands more people is unconscionable.
“Last year, I urged Governor Hickenlooper’s administration to pursue any legal avenue to allow insurance providers to keep these plans for the foreseeable future. They listened at that time, and DOI had all the authority it needed to keep these plans around for at least another year, allowing individuals and families more of the time they need to adjust to this onerous new healthcare law. But DOI has decided to end these plans instead, forcing thousands of Coloradans to deal with the cancellation of their insurance.
“I strongly urge DOI to reconsider their position and allow those Coloradans who would be affected by this decision to keep their healthcare plans. Coloradans were promised by supporters of this healthcare law that if they liked their plans, they could keep their plans. DOI should follow through on that promise, and prove that last year’s extension wasn’t simply an empty election year ploy to fool people into believing they were going to be able to keep the insurance they were promised.”
PEAK NATION™ will remember when Complete Colorado published emails between Salazar’s staffers stating that Udall’s staff was trying to bully the state into parsing the number of insurance policies cancelled in 2013, just as the freshman lawmaker was gearing up for reelection.
“Sen. Udall says our numbers were wrong. They are not wrong. Cancellation notices affected 249,199 people. They want to trash our numbers. I’m holding strong while we get more details. Many have already done early renewals. Regardless, they received cancellation notices.”
After attempts failed to keep the cancellations secret, it sparked a mammoth controversy, turning voters against Udall in an election cycle, prompted Gardner to enter the Senate race, and was eventually part of Udall’s demise.
As the old adage goes, it’s not the crime, but the cover-up that will kill a political career. And this was certainly true in Udall’s case.
Democrats appear to have learned their lesson. Sadly, it’s a political one. They are willing to kick nearly 200,000 Coloradans off their insurance a year early, just to avoid having to do so next year when Bennet is up for reelection.