Solomon wants government to get out of health care as Roberts touts cost-cutting record

With enrollment open for the thousands of Coloradans in the individual and small group health insurance markets coming next week, State Rep. Dylan Roberts of Avon is touting years of hard work, mostly by Democrats , to reduce costs in underserved rural areas of the state.

Recently announced statewide cost increases would be far worse without state and federal efforts, Roberts argues, and can be offset and significantly reduced by shopping around and taking advantage of recently expanded federal subsidies in law. on affordable care (Obamacare).

By contrast, Roberts’ Republican opponent for the critical Northwestern Colorado state senate seat in the Nov. 8 election – Matt Solomon – said “the government has no business when it comes to health care, and he generally believes in the idea that “Taxpayer-funded health care should be abolished in all its forms.”

matt solomon

In a candidate assessment on the Christian election website ivoterguide.com, which claims to be “rooted in God. Rooted in Research,” Solomon, a businessman and former Eagle City Council member, was asked the following question about health care:

“Which best matches your views on health care: A) Health care for all should be guaranteed and funded by the government, with no option for private health care. (includes “universal health care” , “Medicare for All,” etc.) B) Government funded health insurance should be available to anyone who wants it, along with private health care options C) Medicaid and Medicare should remain available , but no other taxpayer-funded programs are needed D) Taxpayer-funded health care should be abolished in all its forms, and Medicaid and Medicare should be de-funded.

Solomon replied, “I fall somewhere between C and D. I am a believer in D; however, I am not opposed to C. I feel that the government has nothing to do, but at the same time, I see the value of Medicaid and Medicare and am not opposed to keeping it in place, as long as we are watching it for abuse.

Asked by email to clarify his statement on the questionnaire and whether he would like to see Obamacare repealed at the federal level and therefore end the state expansion of Medicaid that has dramatically reduced the number of uninsured Coloradans in recent years , Solomon did not respond. He also did not respond to questions about the state reinsurance program or the public option.

Roberts sent a lengthy email response to questions about recent rate increases and overall efforts to reduce health insurance and health care costs on the West Slope, which previously had some of the highest rates. Highest State and Least Competition:

“Ensuring that every Coloradan has access to an affordable, high-quality health insurance plan has been and always will be a priority for me,” Roberts wrote. “Thanks to the bills we passed in the Legislature, including reinsurance, the Colorado Option, and prescription drug price controls, most Coloradans who purchase insurance this fall will have access to After choice and increase savings when combined with ACA tax credits just extended by the IRA [Inflation Reduction Act]. I encourage everyone to shop around and use the help that is out there to bring their costs well below the state average and save money over what they paid last year. For example, high country residents could save up to 38% over last year from subsidies and reforms in Colorado. When I took office in 2018, Eagle County and High Country had the highest insurance costs in the country, had no choice or competition, and we were seeing price increases of over $40 % year after year. We’ve ended that and it’s translating into massive savings and thousands more Colorado residents have access to the security of insurance coverage.

Robert

Open registration for the ACA on the Connect For Health Colorado website begins Tuesday.

The so-called “entitlements” of federal government programs such as Social Security, Medicaid coverage for low-income Americans and Medicare for the elderly have recently been a hot issue for the midterm elections. . House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy — a California Republican and the presumptive Speaker of the House if Republicans regain control — said he would use the debt ceiling debate to cut funding for those programs popular. Roberts calls such talk “dangerous.”

“It’s really shocking to hear that people running for office support something as dangerous as eliminating Medicare,” Roberts said. “Although this is a federal program not controlled by the state legislature, this should be a huge red flag, and I hope every senior in Colorado is aware of this prospect, because it would be devastating to the security of the elderly in the state and the country. Additionally, eliminating Medicaid, which is governed in part by the state legislature, would hurt the state’s most vulnerable and plunge thousands of Coloradans into poverty and without care. Finally, repealing the work done by the legislator in recent years would be extremely harmful. For example, data released this week showed that without reinsurance and the Colorado option, insurance prices would have increased by over 42% statewide instead of the planned 10% and no subsidy would be available to help Coloradans save money on insurance. I heard no plans from the other side as to what they would replace our reforms with other than getting us back to where we were in 2018, which was not working for families and individuals here in Colorado.

In Colorado, GOP Senate candidate Joe O’Dea also supported cutting Medicare and Social Security benefits. Republican congressional candidate Barbara Kirkmeyer, who is running in Colorado’s most competitive race for the US House, said Medicare should be “temporary”.

Consumer advocates continue to point the finger at insurers and hospitals for not doing more to cut costs.

“After several years of fairly stable health insurance prices, consumers in Colorado are going to feel these increases, especially in rural areas,” Mannat Singh, executive director of the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative, said in a press release. “Insurers and hospitals are not trying hard enough to meet the reductions required for some Colorado Option plans, but rather are setting a baseline for not meeting targets without reasonable justification.”

Singh points out that search rates would be 32% higher than next year’s increase without reinsurance.

“Health insurance continues to be unaffordable for too many Coloradans, despite reinsurance moderating premium prices and supplemental plans being offered in more counties,” Singh said. “Premium rates must be reasonable and justified – industry should not use the pandemic or ongoing inflation to boost corporate profits.”

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