ObamaCare Ravages Garden State

850,000+ New Jerseyans forced out of their plans by Obamacare; if you like your plan, vote Lonegan

Corzine-Obama SignWe already knew that basic and essential plans (created in 2002 by Governor Jim McGreevey because other plans subject to Obamacare-style state regulations were too expensive) were a casualty of Obamacare, costing 106,000 New Jerseyans their coverage.

Now we learn that’s just the tip of the iceberg.  The same day the Star-Ledger issued an embarrassing, slobbering editorial endorsement of failed Newark Mayor Cory Booker, they also reported that the disastrous health care law he waxes rhapsodic about (“a very good thing” and “a great bill” and he’s ready to “fight for its implementation”) caused over 800,000 New Jerseyans to receive letters in the last week notifying them that their existing health insurance plan is no longer available.

Remember Obama’s “If you like your plan, you can keep it”? Well… psych!

Now that the prices are posted and everyone sees they are more expensive, the law’s defenders don’t even try to claim people will save money any more.

Here’s the latest half-hearted spin, from the Star-Ledger article:

“Advocates of the new law hail the change as a win for consumers, arguing that all plans must now meet minimum standards — that even if these new plans cost a bit more, they will provide much better coverage.

“In the end it could be a net positive for people,” said Linda Schwimmer, vice president of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute.”

Could be? The higher prices are worth it? If you like your plan, too bad. An analysis by Avik Roy of Forbes found that a typical 40 year-old man in New Jersey will see a 46 percent premium hike thanks to Obamacare. (“A bit”?) You’ll have to buy a more expensive one whether you like it or not — under penalty of law. And politicians have the nerve to boast that they “gave you health care.”

There’s more. Obamacare’s savage cuts to Medicare Advantage are leaving another 50,000 New Jerseyans out in the cold from Horizon alone.  Same article:

Horizon sent notices to 50,000 of its New Jersey members explaining to seniors that their current plans will not be available next year.

“Due to increasing health care costs and continued federal government cuts to Medicare Advantage, Horizon BCBSNJ had to discontinue certain MA plans, create new plans, and increase premiums, in order to continue to be the only carrier offering MA plans in all 21 counties of New Jersey,” Vincz said.

One reason for the change is that Obamacare cut about $200 billion from the Medicare Advantage program, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service. Some of that money was used to pay for other parts of the law.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

The mandate forcing every American into Obamacare can be repealed or at least delayed until the law can be reopened and fixed.  The Medicare Advantage cuts can be reversed in the context of a broader fiscal deal.

This is the choice voters face in the U.S. Senate election: the Newark mayor who thinks Obamacare is great and is fighting to implement it, or the former Bogota mayor, Steve Lonegan, who promises to delay the law until it can be fixed or replaced.

On October 16, send Washington a message: if you like your plan, vote for Steve Lonegan.

Phil Kerpen
About Phil Kerpen 14 Articles
Phil Kerpen is president of American Commitment, and a former vice president for policy at Americans for Prosperity as well as a past researcher for the Free Enterprise Fund, the Club for Growth, and the Cato Institute.


  1. And many of us are forced to buy coverage that we don't even need. Don't have children on your plan? Too bad, because you are required to have pediatric dental coverage anyway. Are you male? Your plan also includes coverage for maternity care and mammograms. All plans are required to have 10 "essential health benefits," including these coverages and more that you will never use or need.

  2. I would be all for Obamacare – if only it affected those who voted for him and left the more intelligent people out of it….

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