Sunday, September 27, 2015

Yes, The New York Obamacare Co-op Pissed Away $340 Million

I posed a question for this answer to IB readers back a year ago. In fact, Mike and I both wrote posts about New Republic dating back to January of 2013. So what's happening now?

New Republic is the health insurance cooperative in New York. They boast having the largest enrollment of any of the government funded co-ops with over 150,000 members. However, it is being shut down by the State of New York and CMS. This should not come as a surprise. Especially knowing that in 2014 they had the lowest rates (by far) in several areas across the state and weren't allowed the premium increases they requested by the New York insurance regulators for 2015. They hemorrhaged $77.5 million dollars in 2014 and another $57.2 million was lost over the first six months of 2015. Ouch.

A little history is important. Before New Republic we had the Freelancers Union. They had their own insurance company - Freelancers Insurance Company (FIC) that was notorious for consumer complaints. Freelancers ended up terminating the entity when Obamacare became a reality. As FIC was winding down, the union was in the process of creating a new venture which they received $340 million in Obamacare grants to start up a health insurance co-op. Instead of associating it with Freelancers, union leadership created a new non-profit which became known as New Republic.

We've already seen other co-ops bite the dust so why should we care more about this one? One word:  relationships. The relationship concern here is between the Freelancers Union, New Republic, and the Obama administration. Freelancers was established in 2003 by Sara Horowitz. Ms. Horowitz is a longtime close friend of President Obama. Back when President Obama was in the Illinois state senate, he and Ms. Horowitz worked together to launch the George Soros-funded liberal think tank Demos. It should also be known that Ms. Horowitz is a Deputy Chair of the Federal Reserve of New York and has been reported to have close ties with U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.

Having friends in high places has netted Horowitz and the Freelancers Union a nice chunk of change. Some may suggest that these co-ops were funded in the same scope as Solyndra. In this case it is not even close. This goes well beyond the scope of Solyndra. This didn't hedge on success of a new technology or product. This allowed our federal government to give huge amounts of money that went directly to lining the pockets of those who aligned and aided a political interest.

As we untangle the web we can see one thing - it's good to be one of Obama's political cronies. And for 150,000 people in New York, sorry but, if you like your plan you definitely aren't keeping it.
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