Legislators Propose Public Option On BadgerCare

Oct 16, 2017

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Following President Trump's Executive Order Thursday affecting funding of the Affordable Care Act, Wisconsin Democrats are saying there is an option for consumers.

Citizen Action of Wisconsin held a call-in Friday where advocates said insurance rate increases are avoidable if Wisconsin adopts the BadgerCare Public Option bill introduced last summer.

The BadgerCare Public Option Bill authored by State Rep. Eric Genrich  of Green Bay and State Sen. LaTonya Johnson of Milwaukee, gives Wisconsinites the option of purchasing BadgerCare on the Affordable Care Act marketplace.

Citizen Action of Wisconsin Executive Director Dr. Robert Kraig says this approach will save money... "....and in fact, within the power of our state government to dramatically change the situation and actually lower premium's dramatically simply by enacting, at no cost to the state, taking the BadgerCare program we already have and making it a Public Option that people can buy into. They can also use the tax subsidies from the ACA to make it more affordable...."

Kraig says statewide, the average would be 24 percent less, but in Rhinelander it would be about 6 percent less. Wausau consumers would see a 38 percent reduction for a 40 year old buying a silver plan in the ACA marketplace.

Key Republicans say the problems stem from President Barack Obama's health law and they are trying to eliminate the Affordable Care Act, though a replacement plan has remained murky. According to an analysis by the non-partisan state Legislative Fiscal Bureau , a BadgerCare buy-in would cost adults about $500 per month. and $200 per month for children

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