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Thanks to a recent Executive Order from President Trump the Obamacare individual mandate is no longer mandatory.
Following President Donald Trump's executive order instructing agencies to provide relief from the health law, the Internal Revenue Service appears to be taking a more lax approach to the coverage requirement.
The health law's individual mandate requires everyone to either maintain qualifying health coverage or pay a tax penalty, known as a "shared responsibility payment." The IRS was set to require filers to indicate whether they had maintained coverage in 2016 or paid the penalty by filling out line 61 on their form 1040s. Alternatively, they could claim exemption from the mandate by filing a form 8965.
For most filers, filling out line 61 would be mandatory. The IRS would not accept 1040s unless the coverage box was checked, or the shared responsibility payment noted, or the exemption form included. Otherwise they would be labeled "silent returns" and rejected.
Instead, however, filling out that line will be optional.
Yowza! The individual mandate is dead! And with it, the funding "glue" that John Roberts decided was necessary to hold Obamacare together is gone, perhaps for good.
And if this news isn't enough to bury Obamacare, how about one of the nation's largest insurers pulling the plug on the exchanges?
While Republicans continue to grapple with plans to repeal and replace Obamacare and stabilize health insurance rates, Humana is the first major insurer to say it is dropping out of the individual market for 2018.
"Based on our initial analysis of data associated with the company's health-care exchange membership following the 2017 open enrollment period, we continue to see further signs of an unbalanced risk pool," said Humana CEO Bruce Broussard, on a conference call with analysts Tuesday. "Therefore, the company has decided that it cannot continue to offer this coverage for 2018."
Translation — we're losing too much money on old, sick people. Which is what everyone with a brain said would happen when Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi foisted this debacle onto us.
Did they listen? No. And so here we are, in the final stages of Obamacare's death spiral.
All we need to do now is wait, and get ready for
the GOP replacement, coming soon to a congressional committee hearing room
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