During Donald Trump’s campaign, he talked several times about how he wants to erase the state lines that, currently, insurance companies can’t cross, and he’s also said that he thinks pharmaceutical companies should lower prices from levels at which he says they are “getting away with murder.” Frankly, it seems, for a Republican, that it would be a reasonable idea to let them compete. However, I think there’s something bigger going on.
First of all, the most basic reason why you can’t sell health insurance across state lines is because regulations prevent it on the basis of risk to the general public. Apparently, you could more easily sell really cheap plans with little to no coverage and only sell such useless insurance to healthy people, leaving sick people without insurance.
However, to me, that doesn’t make any sense. If it’s so heavily regulated, why couldn’t there be a federal regulation that applies to the insurance company regardless of what state it’s in? Historically and just as much today, each state regulates their insurance industries, with little involvement by the federal government. Why? Also, why does it matter? Is it really a states’ rights issue? Moreover, why do the state governments care so much about as well as differ so much on how to regulate the insurance industry?
I get it. It could be incredibly complicated. After all, we’re talking about people’s lives here. However, I don’t buy that so much. Maybe we used to be talking about people’s lives here, but now we’re just talking about insurance companies making money, funding campaigns, and really doing little to nothing for their customers.
Therefore, I think it’s time for a change.