Could Minnesota Replace Obamacare with Tax Credits?

Published On: 18th August 2015

From the internet

Scott Walker has proposed replacing Obamacare with refundable tax credits so that individuals could pay for their private health insurance based on their age instead of their income. This would also cause a restructuring of Medicaid and give individuals the ability to shop for insurance outside of Minnesota.

Walker was in Minneapolis at the time he informed The Associated Press with his plan. Walker, a presidential candidate was making his rounds, outlining his policy initiatives.

So far, the plan doesn’t include an estimate or cost figures. There is no idea how many people would be covered, making it almost impossible to make a good comparison with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) as it is now. From the April to June period this year, over 11 percent of adults in the U.S. were still uninsured, which means around 16 million people gained coverage since the law went into effect in 2013.

Walker says his plan would be paid for by eliminating the $1 trillion in taxes that the ACA currently levies. This would include making changes to how health insurance is taxed and to Medicaid.

Many Republicans have said that they will repeal the law, starting on the first day a Republican would be in the President’s chair. The biggest challenge for any opponent of ACA is the repeal process. The Senate would have to dish out 60 votes in favor and Walker’s plan doesn’t address how he would undo the law.

This would then result in many changes from how people are insured to the income tax procedure that surrounds tax credits.

So far, the Supreme Court has upheld a great deal of the law, which was a defeat for the opponents. The fight has been taking place since 2010.

Some say that cutting Medicaid and raising the taxes on people with employer insurance plans would be the only way the math would work on repealing the law.

While Walker’s plan involves repealing the plan, his plan does include some very similar elements. For instance, there would be no requirement to have insurance, but there would be fines. However, the only way for pre-existing medical conditions to not be an issue is for individuals to maintain continuous coverage.

The big part of his plan is the part in which tax credits would be provided to help pay for coverage. This is not like the current law where the credits are income-based. Under Walker’s plan, the tax credits would be age-based and total between $900 and $3,000. This means that the low- to moderate-income individuals may not receive the break that they are looking for. Not all low income people qualify for Medicaid and any cuts to Medicaid could continue that trend.

Doing away with ACA completely would take insurance away from 19 million people.

Repealing the law is not out of the question, depending on the outcome of the Presidential election. The key is what the plan would be to repeal it and how Americans would be affected health-wise and even tax-wise.