If you want to know just how bad Obamacare is then spend a few minutes talking with Cato’s director of health policy studies, Michael Cannon. Becky and I had a chance to visit with Michael at the last Cato retreat. In addition to his expertise, it’s his bulldog like attitude that makes you thankful he’s on our side. You can see here why finding a more capable antagonist might be harder than signing up for coverage at healthcare.gov. Here’s how Alec MacGillis explains Cannon’s work:
It’s been widely noted that one of the biggest challenges for the Obama administration in setting up the new federal exchange for health insurance was that the project was much bigger than anticipated. Why? Because far fewer states than expected decided to set up their own exchanges—36 of them left the task to the federal government. This meant the feds were left having to pull a huge web of databases, regulations and insurance offerings into healthcare.gov, and that the site was also hit with a greater rate of traffic than it would have been if more customers had gone to exchanges set up by their own states. Meanwhile, some of the states that did set up exchanges (though not all) have been faring far better.
Why did this happen? Why did so many states that fiercely guard their prerogative to handle their own affairs cede control of their health insurance markets to Washington?
Well, a disproportionate share of the credit or blame—depending on how you’re looking at it—goes to a person you’ve probably never heard of: Michael Cannon.
Cannon is a health care policy expert at the libertarian Cato Institute. He is engaging and sharp-witted. He is also an avowed opponent of the Affordable Care Act, and has for several years now been embarked on a legal crusade that, while a ways from triumphing, may have inadvertently played an outsized role in suppressing the number of states setting up their own exchanges, thereby greatly confounding the law’s implementation.
Read Michael Cannon’s response to MacGillis’s article here.