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Congress: Obamacare to boost premiums to $7,186--a year

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Politics,Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets

Health insurance companies, facing new and costly rules and regulations jammed into Obamacare, will boost the premiums on younger Americans as high as 189 percent as they try to recover the new costs imposed by Washington, according to a joint House-Senate report. Families could see premiums rise to $7,186.

In an exhaustive review of 30 studies on the impact of Obamacare, the House Energy and Commerce Committee and Senate Finance and Health, Education, Labor & Pensions committees concluded that younger individuals who now pay a premium of $648 a year will be paying $1,872, a 189 percent jump, once the health reform law fully takes effect.

"At a time of negative economic growth and sluggish job creation, middle class families are struggling to make ends meet. Higher health care premiums are the last thing single young adults and working families can afford. Yet contrary to what the president promised, that is exactly what Obamacare is projected to do," said the report.

The report also found that many families have already felt the impact of surging costs, despite promises Obamacare would tame the price of insurance premiums. "President Obama's promise that premiums would decrease by $2,500 has been broken. Since 2008, the average family premium has instead grown by over $3,000," said the report.

What's to blame: The new law levels taxes and requires far more paperwork than before. "One study has found that the law's health insurance tax will increase premiums over $2,636 and $7,186 over a decade," said the committees.

The committees release is below:

Joint Committee Report Details the Price Young Adults and Middle Class Will Pay for Obamacare's Broken Promises

March 5, 2013

E&C Health Subcommittee Schedules Hearing to Examine How Higher Premiums and Unaffordable Coverage Will Unfairly Hit Young Adults and Middle Class Families

WASHINGTON, DC - Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce, Senate Finance, and Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committees today released a joint report on "The Price of Obamacare's Broken Promises." The report, which is based on a compilation of over 30 studies and analyses, outlines estimated premium increases for all 50 states that will result from the rigid mandates and price controls imposed by the president's health care law.

Obamacare Projections Show Massive Premium Increases

In the case of young adults, premium increases will be even more painful than those imposed on the population broadly. Recent college graduates with entry-level jobs who are struggling to pay off student loan debt could see their premiums increase on average between 145 and 189 percent. Some studies estimate young adults could experience premium increases as high as 203 percent. Any increase, let alone tripling current costs, could break the bank for young adults who have just started out on their own.

Why Americans Will Pay More Under Obamacare

Price controls and requirements to purchase government-approved plans are the lead contributors to more expensive premiums. The law also imposes $165 billion in new taxes and fees on plans, drugs, and medical devices that will be passed onto consumers in the form of higher premiums and prices.

Repeating History's Costly Mistakes

In the mid-1990s, eight states -- Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, and Washington -- enacted Obamacare-like "reforms" such as guaranteed issue and community rating in their insurance markets. As a result, the residents of these eight states faced unaffordable premiums and reduced choices. For example: In 1993, a 30-year-old male and female in New York paid, on average, annual premiums of $1,200 and $1,800 respectively. One month after passing Obamacare-like reforms, premiums skyrocketed to $3,240. For some, premiums increased by 170 percent.