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Obamacare effect? 9 companies exit Nebraska’s health insurance market

By   /   October 11, 2013  /   122 Comments

Part 24 of 93 in the series Obamacare

By Deena Winter | Nebraska Watchdog

LINCOLN — Nine insurance companies are pulling out of Nebraska’s major medical insurance market, and some of them cite Obamacare as the reason for their departure.

EXIT LEFT: Nine companies have pulled out of Nebraska's major medical insurance market since May, some of them citing Obamacare as the reason.

EXIT LEFT: Nine companies have pulled out of Nebraska’s major medical insurance market since May, some of them citing Obamacare as the reason.

Seven of the nine companies have notified the state of their plans to leave since August. Most of them have a minor piece of the major medical market in Nebraska, and likely don’t think it’s worth it to make the changes necessary to comply with the federal health care law.

As Obamacare shifts into a higher gear, all Americans must buy health insurance or pay a fine beginning in January. Insurance companies selling individual plans can no longer sell cheaper, bare-bones plans, must offer an array of benefits and cannot deny people coverage because they’re sick or old.

Aetna, American Family Mutual Insurance, Humana, Independence American Insurance Company, Reserve National Insurance Company, Standard Security Life Insurance Company of New York, Companion Life Insurance and United Security Life and Health Insurance have all informed the state insurance department of their intent to stop selling health insurance to individuals — and in some cases — groups.

Under Nebraska law, insurers are required to notify policyholders in writing of any such changes.

State Insurance Commissioner Bruce Ramge was most recently informed of a departure Thursday morning, when he received a letter from Companion Life saying they’ll leave the market at year’s end, noting that increased regulations under Obamacare would make it difficult to continue. Ramge said the new landscape under Obamacare is the major driving factor in the companies’ pullout, largely because of the administrative and policy changes they’d have to make.

The companies don’t have a large share of the market in Nebraska. Altogether, the nine companies probably amount to less than 10 percent of the market, Ramge said.

“If they only had a very small number of policy holders, then it would be difficult to recoup the cost” of administrative changes to comply with Obamacare, he said.

At least one of the companies is saying Obamacare has nothing to do with its exit. American Family spokesman Steve Witmer said the company stopped writing medical policies in 2009 and decided to focus on its core insurance products, while maintaining the policies it had on the books. On Aug. 29, the company notified about 400 Nebraska customers their policies would terminate in 180 days.

“We’ve just gotten to the point where it’s no longer effective to continue maintaining these policies,” he said. “The wheels have been in motion on this for a long time.”

Aetna spokeswoman Susan Millerick said the company pulled out of Nebraska’s individual market two years ago but Nebraska law requires them to notify members when a plan is discontinued. Since all of existing individual plans will be discontinued in 2014 and replaced with plans that comply with Obamacare mandates, Aetna notified the state of that discontinuance. Earlier this year, Aetna bought Coventry Health Care, which sells group and individual plans in Nebraska and is selling plans on Nebraska’s health exchange.

One company, CoOportunity Health, a federally funded cooperative, has entered the Nebraska market to sell policies in the state’s health care exchange.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska is the state’s largest health insurer, with nearly half the individual market. It’s also one of four companies selling insurance on Nebraska’s health care exchange, which is being run by the federal government and has had a bumpy opening online.

Blue Cross spokesman Andy Williams said last he checked, a grand total of four Nebraskans had successfully signed up for a Blue Cross plan on Healthcare.gov since it went online Oct. 1.

“It’s picking up a little, but I think consumers are still generally having difficulty getting through the entire process,” he said via email. “The site has been down a lot for maintenance, and it’s still pretty hit and miss.”

Contact Deena Winter at deena@nebraskawatchdog.org.

Editor’s note: to subscribe to News Updates from Nebraska Watchdog at no cost, click here.

 

 

 

Part of 93 in the series Obamacare
  1. Obamacare compliance means less money for TN service agencies
  2. The mystery of Obamacare spending in Arkansas
  3. Obamacare raises questions for MD small business owners
  4. Kansas official on Obamacare: ‘Let someone else be the guinea pig’
  5. Obamacare insurance marketplace has plenty of kinks on first day
  6. OR’s Obamacare insurance marketplace hits technological snag
  7. Fail: Day 1 of the New Mexico Obamacare rollout
  8. Senator asks: Do you want this dysfunctional government taking over health care?
  9. Jobs, coverage at risk with Obamacare, MN union health official says
  10. Oregon’s Obamacare ads resemble middle school art
  11. VIDEO: Obamacare vs Affordable Care Act: Comedy triumphs in court of confusion
  12. Patience is key to navigating Illinois’ Obamacare marketplace
  13. Hawaii residents, lawmakers frustrated with health connector glitches
  14. Healthy young, key to Obamacare, aren’t buying it
  15. NM’s health exchange tries to lure ‘young invincibles’
  16. Obama drama: Senator blames governor for big rate hikes
  17. Progressive group navigates Oregon students through Obamacare
  18. Maddening: Trying to log onto federal health care site
  19. You know that one guy who successfully signed up for Obamacare? He didn’t
  20. What’s wrong? It’s been a week, and Obamacare website still not working
  21. HHS Secretary Sebelius back in FL after embarrassing Obamacare rollout
  22. Health centers enroll Floridians in Obamacare as application problems persist
  23. VIDEO: Stewart skewers Sebelius on Obamacare
  24. Obamacare effect? 9 companies exit Nebraska’s health insurance market
  25. Obamacare: Children of undocumented parents face an uncertain future
  26. Which way do we go? Obamacare navigator registration in TN in question
  27. NM health exchange tries to ease problems with Obamacare website
  28. CPA says hype over Obamacare small business tax credit is misleading
  29. Obamacare navigator under fire for arrest warrant
  30. Reports of Obamacare fraud emerge in Tennessee
  31. After two weeks, FL online Obamacare enrollees are hard to find
  32. Illinois state governor touts 100K Obamacare enrollees, all in Medicaid
  33. Kansas lawmaker calls for crackdown on Obamacare navigators
  34. WI health care exchange seeing few getting through
  35. Hawaii’s Obamacare exchange relaunches with more glitches
  36. We’ll know next month how many people in NM signed up for Obamacare — maybe
  37. Zero: Number of Nebraskans Obamacare navigators have signed up
  38. It took this Delaware woman 11 days to sign up for Obamacare – and she was the first
  39. How many people have signed up for health insurance in VA? Who knows?
  40. What else? NM federal health exchange ads stalled due to website problems
  41. Blue Cross hires temp workers to deal with Obamacare glitches
  42. If Obamacare is the next Medicare, will physicians leave en masse?
  43. Three problems that won’t be solved by fixing the Obamacare exchange glitches
  44. Plenty of Oregonians interested in Obamacare, but none can enroll online
  45. Criticize this: Obamacare premiums a near match to WI disclosures
  46. Report: Missourians will see sharp rise in premiums under Obamacare
  47. Kansas navigators say they’ve enrolled no one in Obamacare
  48. Obamacare too costly for rich Coloradans, Democrat congressman says
  49. Study: Kansas premiums to spike following Obamacare rollout
  50. Hang on to your candy: Creepy Uncle Sam is back
  51. Obamacare or bust: NM Watchdog turned back again
  52. Medical journals, experts refute claim that Medicaid cuts ER use
  53. Arkansas spends $4M on Obamacare ads, wants more
  54. LOL: In July video, HHS bragged about being ‘on schedule’ with Obamacare
  55. Illinois uses Day of the Dead to market Obamacare
  56. Sebelius denies GOP’s Terry ‘unreliable’ Obamacare info
  57. About 290,000 Washington residents lose health insurance plans
  58. Broken promise: Obamacare cancels almost 20,000 Kansas health care plans
  59. Top hospitals opt out of Obamacare
  60. Obamacare moves to intensive care
  61. Obamacare provision could lead to more Medicaid fraud
  62. Obamacare: Religious groups want to ‘move mountains’
  63. Obamacare hitting Wisconsin residents with double whammy
  64. Kansas AG: Obamacare threatens consumer privacy
  65. 1,500 in New Mexico have to move out of the high-risk insurance pool
  66. Cover Oregon website fiasco creates jobs, but costs millions
  67. For Florida’s Obamacare small business exchange, it’s crunch time
  68. Only 877 Wisconsinites have signed up for Obamacare, federal report says
  69. Just 172 in NM have completed Obamacare applications: ‘Woefully inadequate,’ says NMIX board member
  70. With only 346 Oklahomans signed up, leaders decry ‘Obamacare debacle’
  71. Defying Obamacare: ‘Send them the bill,’ NM insurance official says
  72. Kansas Obamacare enrollment dwarfed by nearly 20,000 cancellations
  73. Numbers don’t lie: In Illinois, Obamacare means Medicaid
  74. Wisconsin governor proposes insurance plan to address Obamacare rollout failure
  75. Tennesseans might know Tuesday if they can keep canceled health insurance
  76. People demand answers over Oregon’s Obamacare fail
  77. Calif. says ‘no’ to Obamacare freebies, makes own law
  78. HI health exchange violates federal law, League of Women Voters say
  79. Obamacare video winner: ‘Forget about the price tag’
  80. Harvard study finds ‘striking’ rejection of Obamacare by young Americans
  81. HI health exchange has signed up 574 people, for about $348,000 apiece
  82. Are the uninsured getting Obamacare coverage in Illinois?
  83. Secret Obamacare handbook the feds don’t want you to see is online
  84. Lost in translation: Once-supportive Hispanics turning backs on Obama, ACA
  85. HI Obamacare exchange not fiscally sustainable, lawmakers told
  86. Illinois’ latest Obamacare targets: gold diggers and momma’s boys
  87. Now Democrats are bashing California’s Obamacare exchange, too
  88. Obamacare: For $1.37M we get Richard Simmons in lurid web stream
  89. Obamacare: A welcome mat for IRS horrors
  90. California senator seeks audit of state Obamacare exchange
  91. Report: Hawaii ranks worst for Obamacare signups
  92. CA senator sues Obamacare exchange for causing policy cancellations of 1M
  93. Failure of Maryland Obamacare exchange could mean higher premiums in North Dakota

Please, feel free to "steal our stuff"! Just remember to credit Watchdog.org. Find out more

Deena Winter

  • Bam

    Wow. Why would insurance companies lwave a market that some on here have claimed “millions were flocking to”? Because it’s one of the biggest disasters ever created by government and the proponents are flocking liars.

  • Scott

    hmmm…sounds to me like they know their prices will not be competitive in Nebraska, so they are leaving the market…working just like a free market should.

  • gerardharbison

    If you like the insurance you have, you can keep it…

    (One of the great funny lines of all time)

  • gerardharbison

    ObamaCare is not a free market. If I want to buy insurance without pregnancy coverage, I can’t.

  • Family of five

    They’re leaving because they can’t charge a family $1,452.92 for a monthly premium. This is the amount Companion Life/IHC Health Solutions charged us and we received the “Dear John” letter two days ago. Every year our health insurance went up $200 due to a pool of customers utilizing medical in a “variety of factors”. I’m sure one of those “factors” is a big fat CEO bonus. What a mess.

  • Teri

    What I don’t get is, where are they going then? For every state in the union the rules are the rules for the ACA. So, they are going to have to offer everyone anywhere they go the same coverage and not gouge them.

  • BossMan

    Pat, you’ve been mixing whiskey with your fruit loops again. Have a nice lwave.

  • Sheesh

    And I can’t buy a policy that doesn’t cover testicular cancer. Never could.

  • Hunyock

    This is punishing young working people with families the most. Just like their website, this is a train wreck. According to Obamacare, (actually Kennedycare but I digress) those in a job that offers insurance can get affordable coverage. (though still higher than before) However, the cost is much greater for their family members if they want to be put on the same policy. Also, since they can get coverage through the breadwinners job, the other members cannot apply for Obamacare since they don’t qualify. I see a lot of children going uninsured because of this.

  • Donna Long

    How can you know this? You don’t. You’re just hoping for it and that is so unfair.

  • Biff Pocoroba

    Not a big deal here, folks. Nine companies — one that no longer carries health insurance anywhere — leave the market where they have a very small share to begin with. It’s a market share decision, a sound business decision more than anything else.

  • Donna Long

    Read the article, please. Most of them left before the ACA. Others don’t have enough business in NE, before the ACA. Some, changed their business model.

  • Donna Long

    Yes, but most people don’t want to admit their premiums have been increasing astronomically over the years. Now they have to spend a higher percentage of premium income on actually paying peoples’ healthcare bills. Imagine that. The CEO’s can’t just take until it hurts their customers!

  • Donna Long

    YES!

  • Michael Henke

    to many negatives. can’t, doesn’t. What is your point? Everyone (male and female) now is covered for testicular cancer from my understanding.

  • Michael Henke

    your point to counter his is what? **crickets chirping**

  • Mike Meister

    I wish Watchdog would actually investigate why this is happening rather than add kerosene to the “Obamacare” fire. What affect has the governor’s decisions not to play affected Nebraskans? (Ask California, Nevada, Washington and New York) How does refusing to expand Medicaid affect the rural hospitals in the state? (Ask Arizona) I don’t expect much from Watchdog because it’s becoming more and more a shill for the right wing masquerading as journalism. I used to enjoy the Watchdog it slanted slightly right but not so much so that it was offensive to my senses. Perhaps if they are reading this they will reevaluate their committment journalistic integirity.

  • Michael Henke

    I know Humana is still in other states but it didn’t make sense to stay in NE with all the Affordable Health Care changes.

  • Michael Henke

    “Most of them have a minor piece of the major medical market in Nebraska, and likely don’t think it’s worth it to make THE CHANGES necessary to comply with the federal health care law.”

  • Michael Henke

    ““If they only had a very small number of policy holders, then it would be difficult to recoup the cost” of administrative changes to comply with Obamacare, he said.”

  • spongeO

    Maybe you can start your own website to investigate the things you want to hear about.

  • Hunyock

    I wish it wasn’t, but if the individual insurance is less than 9.5% of income, the entire family has to take the company offered insurance or be fined by the government, and then they are not qualified for credits. they only use the individual employee cost in the calculation. The middle class which has a family is going to get hammered. To find this out, I think everyone should post what they are paying for their family’s insurance for 2013 and then also post what it will all cost them for 2014. Be sure to count what families will get in credits to be fair.

  • Biff Pocoroba

    Yes, sponge, because the rest of us certainly don’t need any pesky facts to get in the way of our decision-making process!

  • Nebraska Wonderwoman

    I totally agree with you. Pulling out of the Nebraska exchanges “because of Obamacare” doesnt make sense. Obamacare is the law of the land… all states, not just Nebraska. I liked how at the end we see that some had planned this long ago and admit it has nothing to do with the ACA, but if this is the case why fan the flames of Obamacare in the beginning of the article? What ever happened to unbiased news reporting? Just the facts.

  • Nebraska Wonderwoman

    Actually, rates at my company went up less this year than in the past 8 yrs. and for a very small increase this year (less than $20 a month) I am able to add all my children where last year the policy only allowed for me and one child.

  • Biff Pocoroba

    Because insurance companies go where the money is…with nine companies splitting about 10 percent of the market in Nebraska…why expend money on the overhead, on meeting Nebraska insurance regulations that are different from those in other states, and on agent commissions, for such a small part of the market. No folks, these companies has moved on not because of the ACA, but because it makes sense for their business model.

  • Nebraska Wonderwoman

    Not many companies offer insurance for less than 9.5% of income, especially if you are working a lower income job. Good try. See my previous post on how my insurance is changing. (less than $20 a month increase to add all my children on the same policy I was only allowed one child last year).

  • Joe Blow

    You must not have read this story, which addresses those very questions above: http://watchdog.org/109095/obama-drama-senator-blames-governor-for-big-rate-hikes/

  • Michael Henke

    read the article. “Obamacare is the major driving factor in the companies’ pullout, largely because of the ADMINISTRATIVE AND POLICY CHANGES they’d have to make.” #fact

  • Michael Henke

    But they were providing service before ACA. ACA caused them to leave.

  • Michael Henke

    False. It made since before ACA but now there is more administrative and policy change costs.

  • Biff Pocoroba

    Nay. True. The one company no longer even sells health insurance. Another said up front that the ACA had NOTHING to do with the withdrawal from Nebraska. Why pay all that overhead and have your company legal team spending time on Nebraska insurance regulations for a teensy bit of the market? Sure, maybe the ACA caused some of the companies to bail, but certainly not all, maybe even a minority of companies among the nine.

  • Michael Henke

    Thanks for admitting companies have left the state due to ACA.

  • LarMond

    Well thank goodness this does not affect the Firefighters of Omaha or they would have to be out working second jobs! Oh wait! They already are!

  • Mike Meister

    I hadn’t. Thank you for directling me that way – and apologies to Watchdog.

  • disqus_ALZzDtjqSI

    Hunyock is completely correct. My husband’s insurance for an individual is less than 9.5% of his income, but with him signing up for family coverage it is jumping up to 25% of our income. This is through United Healthcare. So since his company offers INDIVIDUAL for no more than 9.5% of his income which is mandated by Obamacare, we can not go on the exchanges regardless of how much his company is charging us for family coverage. Obamacare only mandated the 9.5% of total income for Individual coverage, not for family coverage. So Nebraska Wonderwoman you are one of the lucky ones. The rest of us will not be so lucky and there is no way we can afford 25% of our income to pay for insurance that includes a high deductible and partial payment for prescriptions.

  • Dawna

    This article has a misleading title. Those companies, as stated, have a very small market share in Nebraska. Obamacare is about pooling larger groups (exchanges) to lower cost of insurance. There is so much WRONG with this attitude of not wanting to pay for health insurance, and it has been perpetrated by Republicanswith ulterior, political motives. Shame on anyone who fails to take personal responsibility for their healthcare–especially among the younger population. And for those who are too simple-minded to figure this out: we are already paying for the uninsured through hidden costs. If any aspect to the program needs tweaking, it would be including serious tort reform and revamping the outrageous profits that medical pharmaceuticals and equipment suppliers are raking in (thanks to the Bush administration). It’s about time Teanderthals be given the boot so this country can address real issues.

  • Dawna

    Bam, your responses to ANY of these articles is predictable: you’re just a hate-mongerer who gets led around by the nose with sensational, non-factual propaganda. So while you are enjoying first amendment rights, remember there are others yawning at your responses and wishing people like you would just Grow Up. You don’t even have the guts to sign with your own name–no conviction there– just another mindless rant from a Faux News addict.

  • voterid

    What I’d like to know what is a “Federally Funded” Cooperative? Does that mean the government is now in the business of selling insurance? And…a Cooperative is usually owned by the people that invest in or purchase from that cooperative i.e. usually an electric company…how did this happen?…any suggestions as to how the federal government got an insurance license to sell insurance in Nebraska? Isn’t this a conflict of interest?…Or is this another step forward to a single payer system?

  • voterid

    BS

  • Hunyock

    No, but it will definitely affect Stothert’s plan to move the Fire and Police Union employees to the city health care coverage.

  • Hunyock

    .

  • Hunyock

    I’m happy for you. Sad for me and others.

  • Robert

    because it is just so easy to scrape together the hundreds of dollars per month to purchase that insurance, which no longer can be paired down to cover just the highest risks a healthy person has, that would make the policies more affordable.
    Once the market place has been marginalized, the next phase will be forced health standards of living, and the freedom of choice of the individual is no longer valued, just life styles that rule makers deem respectable.

    The answers were so easily identifiable..
    1) improve efficiency of care to lower cost by having established standards of data entry and records.
    2) use gains in efficiency from technology to lower costs.
    3) Move malpractice and liability to a criminal level and remove the civil tort exposure.
    4) Increase the competition of the market by breaking down the barriers between states.
    5) place an export and import tax on Medical Industries to offset the costs that Americans pay for other countries healthcare through our research and development.
    6) Increase the patents and product protections of US products over seas.
    7) reduce the costs of education
    8) Cap the liability of patients by creating a new subset to the Bankruptcy laws that enable someone to file Bankruptcy with a greater protections of their assets and a longer term pay out of remaining liability as it deals with just the personal debt due to healthcare.

  • Robert

    presuming of course that it is facts that are missing and not just mild innuendo and hypothetical possibilities…right?

  • Hunyock

    this is not about people being personally responsible for their health insurance. Quite the opposite. It’s about the government being responsible for our health insurance. the one thing about the government that I have noticed over the years is that they continually change what they originally promised when it doesn’t suit them.

  • Robert

    They will go where there is higher populations from which to gain greater account numbers so as to spread the risks and incurring the costs of administration just to be in a market.

    Also note that the ACA is only coming into function now, its effect can be seen in business practices since it became clear it was going to be passed and made into law. Companies move off of what they can foresee in the future not the what they know of the present.

  • Robert

    Why couldn’t you? Such policies did exist.

  • gerardharbison

    Reporting bad news about ObamaCare — and there’s lots — is evidently now strenglich verboten. And unless you toe the same line as the pro-Democrat OWH and LJS, your integrity will be insulted.

    Florida has over fifty carriers offering insurance, and they’re on the Federal exchange. New Mexico has its own exchange, and only five companies are participating.

  • Robert

    Since ACA is the law of the land, and business has to abide by the rules of the market, how is it that both can not be true? I don’t see it as an either or scenario.

  • gerardharbison

    A total of 5 Iowans and four Nebraskans have completed Obamacare applications after 11 days, but it’s all going according to plan! Nothing to see here folks. Move along!

  • Robert

    The obvious counter to this is “Why were these companies in the market in the first place? What changed to make them feel that those goals and reasons were no longer viable?” It very well could be that the macro changes of ACA cause many to change their business models, and you are simply looking at the micro and its effects specifically as it applies to this micro (Nebraska) market rather than realizing that the Macro changes also incur the need to leave certain markets and move into others, or get out of the health care insurance business all together as one appears to have done.

  • Liz

    Then why is it not happening? We have been paying for this for 3 years and have seen no benefits from it yet and obviously won’t be seeing any in the near future.

    And I always love the statement made by liberals about us already paying for the uninsured through hidden costs. This does stop the hidden costs. Now it is out in the open. We will still be paying for them through higher taxes and fees.

    I am thankful that the company that I work for is keeping our insurance, but they have made it possible to drop us at anytime with all the cutbacks in employees. I really do not expect to have insurance next year when the full force of the employer mandates come down. And with the 23% in paycuts that I have taken over the last five years I can’t afford a $578 a month premium with no subsidy.

  • Liz

    Ideologue much?

  • Liz

    Please say that you are being sarcastic!

  • Liz

    Compared to PMSNBC. And as I yawn at your responses. Can you please just state your facts and drop the BS? All we have here is one ideologue versus another ideologue.

  • guest

    Can you support that nine companies assertions? A Google search presents more than that not to mention the companies that are kicking spouses off the health care insurance and those reducing hours. The sound business decision part means more companies will be dropping health insurance as it will be cheaper to pay the penalty than pay for health insurance. All you have to do is look at the school systems in Nebraska that have cut hours and personnel to reduce costs. Those who need it the most are the ones getting hammered. The real question is, since medicaid is a federal program, why do the Feds not offer Medicaid on the exchanges they run? By not doing so they defeat the whole purpose of Obama care. Must be to expensive for them to do. But yes the states can afford it? And don’t give the old Medicaid is a state/federal system. The Feds can run it as they see fit, even if by themselves. They chose not to, showing they do not really care about the uninsured unless they could get the states to pay part of the bill.

  • Michael Henke

    4. You’ll Pay More For Things You Don’t Want http://www.freedomworks.org/blog/jborowski/top-8-ways-young-women-are-hurt-by-obamacare

    Google didn’t turn up anything for specifically testicular cancer but the above link covers I think Sheesh’s point.

  • guest

    They could be in danger of a tax on their plans because they are taxable Cadillac plans. That is one of the biggest waivers items the administration has given out. Mainly to unions.

  • guest

    There is no part what so ever that is free market in the Obama care system.

    Merriam Webster, : an economic market or system in which prices are based on competition among private businesses and not controlled by a government

    If you believe different you probably also believe that the president and parliament of Iran are the supreme ruling bodies and they are a democracy.

  • Dave D

    So tell me why ANY company could with good fiscal sense spend additional millions of dollars to make less money?

  • guest

    I’m sure the fact that ACA specifies how much of a profit an insurance company can make had nothing to do with their decision. What is the only thing that changed before they made their decision to leave?

  • guest

    To all the posters at this site that believes any government entity came provide a service such as health care better than the private sector should take a quick peek at the federal health care system in such places as the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

  • guest

    Refer to the housing crash of a few years ago. Federal rules were not within the common sense or accounting rules of how a business is to function. Thus the crash. For the lending intuitions it was either follow the federal law or we will bury you. Ironically, either action lead to the same outcome.

  • Hope

    Your argument against hatemongers who resort to sensational, non-factual propoganda seems a little lacking in credibility when you yourself use terms like “Faux News” and “Teanderthal” (in your previous post).

  • Michael Henke

    Anything to counter his statements? **crickets chirping**

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001054865978 Mike Bishop

    The OWH is pro- Democratic? That is news to me. Why? Just because Warren Buffet purchased it? The OWH was always pro-Republican and still is, mainly, so far as I am concerned.

  • Bam

    Oh, sorry, AssBoss – my name’s STILL not Pat.

  • Bam

    Boy, that’s kind of freaky. Hate monger? Because I pointed out that the people who say millions are flocking to the site are wrong? That even the international press are reporting people are signing up in the single digits? Show me YOUR proof that millions are flocking and I’ll quit rocking your world.

    I’d have to have cable to watch “Faux” (funny that liberals still think that’s cute to say after 15 years). And WTF is “Dawna”? That name means nothing to me or anyone else on here.

  • Bam

    In case you missed the news, the old pro-Republican editors retired and were replaced by young progressives. You should read the paper before saying what you think it was.

  • Bam

    1) Blames Watchdog
    2) Blames Republicans
    3) Blames young people who are simple
    4) Says people who want limited government are primitive and punishes their opinion with name-calling
    5) Blames Bush

    That’s how you show you’re not a hate monger!

  • Hunyock

    Funny, isn’t Hal Daubs BIL or something the lead editor of the OWH? All you have to do is read the fluff piece about the current mayor and her non-housebroken puppy that she lets run around the mayor’s office to see that. Like Obama with the national media, you won’t see many articles that question anything that Stothert will do.

  • 4sure

    Government has already failed at healthcare with Veteran’s Healthcare and gov’t healthcare on reservations. Or look at the horrible financial issues with medicare and social security, or the failed post office… Government is the perfect way to waste money besides simply lighting it on fire…

  • D. Mark

    Obama at his best and do not forget to thank Ben Nelson!

  • HuGnu

    A bad reporting of a non-story.
    Nothing here, move along.

  • Bam

    If it’s a non-story, Rich, why are you wasting time commenting on it?

  • Bam

    You want they should fabricate lies, Huny? She’s doing a great job – deal with it.

  • Jazzee

    and all the things required in the policy
    I am 60 why do I need to pay for maternity benefits and kids eye care??? don’t need it don’t want it can’t afford this mess
    the American people have been LIED to by obamaer watch the nightmare begin

  • OldTimerUSNCB

    When the smart people in Government in this case the Demarcates create a law that you can pay a 100 to 200 Dollar fine a year as long as you want not to have to pay Premium’s on a heath Insurance Policy then if you have major heath problems, Heart Disease, cancer, diabetes, or any major disease then a Insurance Company has to give you a policy by Law and pay all expense’s DAY one until you die. It would be like getting Married and finding out your Wife or Husband is a Million Dollars in debt and going to have to help pay it off by a new Law that was just passed. Only somebody that sit in their Moms basement and collects a Government check would think this is a FAIR Law.

  • Guest

    Wow. People get to choose between four companies. How long til there’s a single choice? Which of course was the point of Democrat Care.

  • Hunyock

    I wish they would be objective in their reporting. Like when she complains about a fire chief who can’t stick to a budget, then takes out a $25 million dollar bond to pay for general maintenence that is outside her own budget. She can’t has chosen to spend borrowed money above the budget there. Why isn’t the OWH pointing this out. She spends money worse than Hal Daub and our federal government.

  • http://www.foxrepublican.com/ Foxrepublican

    You can’t get insurance when you are rushed into an emergency room. You have about a 2 months period a year to pick your insurance and if you don’t you have to wait until next year. This first year it’s 6 months but that is only this year. Of course getting your info from the right will give you misinformation every time.

  • Bam

    I’m still waiting for the Obamacare proponents to find stores that say people are finding success in signing up. Here’s one from today that they aren’t – heavily promoted event in Pittsburgh with even the HHS secretary there and they couldn’t log in. EPIC FAIL. http://triblive.com/business/headlines/4855077-74/website-sebelius-health#axzz2hQoAuLSf

  • Michael Mooneyham

    I applied on the day 2 in Oregon and was Fast-tracked to a great plan, sorry your state isn’t as responsive yet but Oregon had a plan in effect, the Oregon Health Plan, so we were ready to jump. Stick with it and save money, and stay healthy.

  • Michael Mooneyham

    Sounds good on paper as long as some greedy corp. doesn’t just keep the savings and raise the prices anyway. The system was carefully put together to maxamize profits, not care for people.

  • Dave

    Could this indicate that the corporations pulling the medical insurance would not longer be able to keep linear profits with a mandatory cap at 20% administrative cost? It is called a competitive market in the real world.

  • Average Redneck Girl

    You get what you voted for. How’s the Hopey Changey thing working?

  • Average Redneck Girl

    Absolutely the government has failed! The government can’t control anything it creates. It can’t control the expensive and out of control medicaid, medicare, the military, and has ruined social security.

    And we think it can control medical costs. Yep, this is about control.

    Socialism run amok.

  • Average Redneck Girl

    Bossman, your psychiatrist has called. Your medicine to control your delusions is ready at the pharmacy.

  • Average Redneck Girl

    Dawna, please remember that free is NOT free. Someone has to pay for it. Which are you? A payor or a payee?

  • Average Redneck Girl

    Shhh….. we aren’t supposed to know about that….

  • Average Redneck Girl

    Its interesting that Obama wants ALL of us to have insurance so we have it and those that have the Cadillac plans get taxed. Why? Other than a revenue source for his government control program, I don’t see why.

    Can someone politely help me out on this?

  • Average Redneck Girl

    Unbiased news reporting I believe went out initially with the 60′s and the Vietnam War. The media saw how they could control things with news without all the facts.

    If a person has ALL the facts, then they can make up their minds and form decisions on NOT to drink the kool aide.

  • Average Redneck Girl

    They can’t even get the website right and they want to give us healthcare. Pretty scary.

    I know some under employed high school and college kids that are highly intellectual in the IT world. Maybe they could get it right.

  • Average Redneck Girl

    Guest: Under Obama and the rest of the Control Freaks, it was never meant to be a free market. Cloward – Privens ideology rule in Obama’s world. Once we get all the illegals on board per Cloward Privens plan, watch out. The government establishment of the Minimum Wage also plays a part in the Cloward -Privens ideology. Once the government completely controls health care, the rest will fall into place.

    No wonder the government needs all those bullets, The natives will be restless.

  • Average Redneck Girl

    I don’t need to jump on the band wagon to have someone else pay for my healthcare. I do accept personal responsibility. I have my own family to take care. I have retirement to save for as well as ensuring my offspring that I created, get a college education.

    I don’t need control in my life. I do just fine. I guess it was my upbringing that cause me to be responsible for me and what I create.

    Take care of your own. I don’t need welfare.

  • Average Redneck Girl

    Yep pregnancy at the age of 60 can be tough, especially if your the guy. How could that happen anyway? A pregnancy 60 year old male? Anyway, you get to pay for everyone else. Spread the wealth. How dare you NOT pay.

  • Average Redneck Girl

    I am thinking Concierge Medicine. Sounds like quality care over government care.

  • Germaine Harms

    So let me get this straight.. they are moving out of Nebraska because of a Federal mandate…Where are they going then that they wouldn’t be subject to the federal mandate? This story is poorly written and has lots of obvious holes!

  • OJClutchpopper

    Hey, Schiffer. Did you even READ the article? They are pulling out of the HEALTH INSURANCE market. One even mentioned that they will focus on their “core” constituents. You know, auto, home, life, etc. They just won’t be selling HEALTH insurance anymore. Does it make more sense now?

  • OJClutchpopper

    I see there are several people posting here that seem to be singing the praises of Obamacare. Let me tell you all something: I was PERFECTLY SATISFIED with the plan I had. As far as I’m concerned, it was the best health insurance plan I had ever had. Now this new law comes about and screwed it all up for me. You know, less coverage, coverage for crap I don’t need, MUCH higher out of pocket expense, and a higher premium. Didn’t Obama say “If you like your plan, you can keep your plan..”? That was an outright LIE.
    And to those of you saying that you got a better, cheaper plan on the Obamacare exchange (especially that dude from Oregon (land of tree-hugging queers)), I call BS!! You’re a damned liar, and I DARE you to prove otherwise. Friggin’ liberals…

  • Snake Plissken

    Funny how people think that this thing Obamacare will be wildly successful, but they choose to forget other Government programs that are wildly broke.. Social Security, Medicare, and Prescription drug benefit, have about 126 trillion in unfunded liabilities, and you liberals want to keep letting them run things…. Really???

  • Snake Plissken

    lol.. What’s it like to be part of the sheep heard? Oh hail our lord and savior Obama, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE run our health care for us.. save us lord Obama in Obama’s name we pray..Amen.. Seriously it is becoming completely clear now how the people Germany followed Nobel Peace prize winner Adolf Hitler as far as they did.. people not able to think critically for themselves.

  • Snake Plissken

    I predict future happiness for
    Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of
    the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”

    Thomas Jefferson

  • chuck drew

    The majority of comments below only go to prove why this part of America is called “FLY OVER COUNTRY”!! It’s because people in this part of the country are, for the most part, in a few words, mean spirited, STUPID, social parasites!!

  • chuck drew

    Watchdog is a Right Wing Org. Do a little R&D on it & you will have your eyes opened. The only reason it sometimes comes off as neutral or Left is because of Joe Jordans’ personal bias. The big boys in DC must have come down on him to Cut the Left Wing Crap!!!

  • Tom B.

    Hey Guest!! You should be on FOX News with John Stoessel (Sp?) or Bill O’Reilly. And I mean that as a compliment.

  • icthelite

    If this program is so full of glitches that are making it hard for folks to sign up can you imagine what it will be like when it comes time to find out why claims aren’t getting paid. If the mentality of the people you have to deal with on the phone is even on par with what one deals with to day it’s going to be a nightmare. Given the fact that government, union protected employees don’t feel they have to put forth a lot of effort to serve to begin with and aren’t’ that worried about losing their jobs there are going to be a lot of unhappy campers with this change that’s been shoved down their throats.

  • Jon Robinson

    Even when it comes to something as basic, and apparently as simple and straightforward, as the question of who shut down the federal government, there are diametrically opposite answers, depending on whether you talk to Democrats or the Republicans.

    There is really nothing complicated about the facts. The Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted all the money required to keep all government activities going- except for ObamaCare.

    You can check the Congressional Record.

    As for the House of Representatives’ right to grant or withhold money, the Constitution of the United States says spending bills must originate in the House of Representatives, which means that Congressmen there have a right to decide whether or not they want to spend money on a particular government activity.

    ObamaCare is indeed “the law of the land,” as its supporters keep saying, and the Supreme Court has upheld its Constitutionality.

    But the whole point of having a division of powers within the federal government is that each branch can decide independently what it wants to do or not to do, regardless of what the other branches do, when exercising the powers specifically granted to that branch by the Constitution.

    The Senate chose not to vote to authorize that money to be spent, because it did not include money for ObamaCare. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says that he wants a “clean” bill from the House of Representatives. But what is unclean about not giving Reid everything he wants?

    If Senator Reid and President Obama refuse to accept the money required to run the government, because it leaves out the money they want to run ObamaCare, that is their right. But that is also their responsibility.

    You cannot blame other people for not giving you everything you want. And it is a fraud to blame them when you refuse to use the money they did vote, even when it is ample to pay for everything else in the government.

    When Barack Obama keeps claiming that it is some new outrage for those who control the money to try to change government policy by granting or withholding money, that is simply a bold-faced lie. You can check the history of other examples of “legislation by appropriation” as it used to be called.

    Whether legislation by appropriation is a good idea or a bad idea is a matter of opinion. But whether it is both legal and not unprecedented is a matter of fact.

    Perhaps the biggest of the big lies is that the government will not be able to pay what it owes on the national debt, creating a danger of default. Tax money keeps coming into the Treasury during the shutdown, and it vastly exceeds the interest that has to be paid on the national debt.

    Even if the debt ceiling is not lifted, that only means that government is not allowed to run up new debt.

    Unless the Republicans get their side of the story out- the lies will win. More importantly, the whole country will lose. – Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, Stanford, Calif.

  • guest

    Now there’s a compassionate, intelligent comment by a giant of charitable giving.

  • Doa74656

    These people you Impugning will also last longer than you if left in a given environment without an ipod

  • Doa74656

    Derp

  • Tom T

    A quote from former republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin. You Tearrorists must be so proud.

  • BossMan

    Baits And Masterbaits=BAM

  • Bam

    Sorry! Still “Baits all morons.” Thanks for taking the bait!

    Did you go to the same colleges as Rich Ketter? I notice you both have the same spelling talents and junior-high humor, in addition to logging in under different aliases.

  • Robert

    I don’t agree with your example or its conclusion. The ACA has been known to be the rule long before it was officially the rule. Business builds its models around projections of the future, not simply conclusions of the past. I don’t see why business could not have seen the writing on the wall and simply adjusted their actions over the time it took for ACA to become official law and rule of the market.

    As for your example, the crash was specifically a failure in Govt to enforce its role and rules of that market. We were not lacking in the rules of regulation but rather in the enforcement of the rules, Surely more constructs of how to deal with such an event could have made it easier to deal with, but there was nothing lacking in ability to have cut it off before it became the huge problem it ended up being, what was lacking was willingness by the Fed to do its job.

  • Robert

    I found your position unique, so I did a little digging…as of OCT.11 (9 days after you state you got signed up), the Oregon State report showed 0 signed up completely for its exchanges.
    Washington Post article-
    *Obamacare a success so far? Lack of enrollment numbers from many states makes it hard to sayBy Associated Press,October 11, 2013

    “… In Oregon and Colorado, the official number of completed applications is zero.”

    I am not going to flat out say you are lying, but I will say if what you say is true, you might want to contact your state and find out why they don’t have you signed up ;)
    I will also point out just how horribly different your state is from the image you are painting…seems if none are signed up..it can’t be all that great?

  • guest

    Historically, mortgages required a 10 to 20% down payment with proof of ability to pay. Federal rules did away with those requirements. (Just like Obama care which has no requirements for proof of financial qualifications for subsidies.) Those requirements put in by a solid business model proved their worth prior to Dodd Frank. After they were thrown out by the government, all mortgage business was put on a shaky foundation. How do we know? the banks made derivatives that bet against the mortgages being successful. Indeed it was the enforcement of federal rules that made the collapse possible and inevitable. Why would supposed business men be forced into such a risky business? The threat of cut off from the federal trough and knowing they could make it up in other not so formal and ordinary ways.

  • Dave

    Chances are that these Insurance companies were looking for a reason to pull out of Nebraska anyway. Very small market with very poor market share. It only makes since for them to move those resources to bigger pay-off, larger base, markets.
    An example of this would be when Younkers closed their store in the old Brandeis building years ago. They were making money, just not the profit per square foot that they wanted to make.

  • Dave

    Not really. The Affordable Care act was passed by both houses and signed into law. They are obligated to pay for it. It is the law.
    If they want to repeal it they have to go thru formal negotiations and vote on it. Your suggesting that the use the good old “dine and dash” tactic.

  • citizenmovingalong

    he’s not suggesting anything, it’s a copypasta of an article. No original thought here.

  • HuGnu

    Why do you waste your time posting?
    You have no opinion.