Thursday, October 20, 2016
another Obamacare failure: Fewer Americans Have Private Health Insurance Now Than in 2007
Credit: Sarah Stierch (CC BY 4.0)
President Obama and Hillary Clinton love to talk about the "20 million people" who've allegedly been added to the health insurance rolls under Obamacare. But in truth, a lower percentage of Americans have private health insurance now than in 2007, even though Obamacare is the law.
That's according to the federal government's own figures. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (see table 1.2b), 66.8 percent of those living in the United States had private health insurance in 2007. Now, as of 2015 (the most recent year for which figures are available), only 65.6 percent of those living in the United States have private health insurance.
It turns out that median incomes aren't the only thing that have dropped since 2007.
There are currently about 320 million people living in America. If the percentage who have private health insurance were as high now as it was in 2007, 3.8 million more people would now have private health insurance.
Meanwhile, the CDC figures show that the percentage of people living in the United States who havepublic health coverage has risen dramatically, from 18.1 percent in 2007 to 25.3 percent in 2015 (see table 1.2a). If that percentage had stayed the same as in 2007, 23 million fewer people would now have public health coverage. In other words, Obamacare is a massive Medicaid expansion.
At Investor's Business Daily, John Merline writes that "the entire decline in the uninsured rate for non-retirees since 2007 is due to the expansion of government health programs—mostly Medicaid" (italics in original).
And now Hillary Clinton wants to move us further in the direction of government-run health care, with a "public option" and Medicare for the middle-aged. The far better course of action for America is a conservative alternative that would get people onto private insurance of their choice and the get the government out of the business of controlling our health care sector.
Jeffrey H. Anderson, author of "An Alternative to Obamacare," is a Hudson Institute senior fellow.