No Competition, Cost Overruns — Where Do We Go From Here On The ‘Private’ Option?

Capitalism for dummies

You’ll probably find this hard to believe, but things aren’t going to so well with the Obamacare “private” option: just last week, my colleague Dan Greenberg wrote about the lack of competition in the program. Forbes had a national piece last week about the cost overruns of the program -- so far, after just a few short months, it’s currently 11% over original projections. In response to these developments, many lawmakers have been proactive in trying to figure out what’s driving the cost … [Read more...]

New Report Highlights Candidates’ Positions On Policy

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I know many of you have been relying on The Arkansas Project for news and analysis of the ongoing GOP legislative primaries around the state. While I’ve been conducting interviews with candidates, my colleague Dan Greenberg over at AAI has been helping to compile a comprehensive report that highlights where candidates stand on many more policy issues. (Well, at least it highlights where candidates are willing to say they stand.) This survey was conducted by Commerce In Action. They sent a … [Read more...]

Damon Wallace’s Degree Problem

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I’ve written in some detail about Damon Wallace’s financial troubles. Not only does this candidate for House District 96 have thousands in IRS debts, but he also failed to disclose some of the debts he owed to local governments in northwest Arkansas. (The worst-case scenario under Arkansas law is that this kind of error in disclosure could lead to fines and jail time.) Stunningly, Wallace explained some of his financial problems to Larry Henry of 5News by saying “I wasn’t trying to hide it. … [Read more...]

The Competition Vacuum in the “Private” Option

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You might recall that one of the selling points of the “private” option was market competition. Competition among insurance carriers was going to lower prices and improve the quality of services. Indeed, the actuaries who estimated the costs of the “private” option relied on the low prices that competition would create. Our insurance commissioner even explained that the high number of carriers that were participating – four! – was triggered by the “private” option. In reality, market … [Read more...]

Live-Stream: GOP Attorney General Debate

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Live streaming video by Ustream … [Read more...]

“There Is A Lot Wrong” With This Forbes Article, But Legislators Are Too Busy To Explain

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Yesterday, Forbes published an insightful piece about the Arkansas Obamacare “private” option. The bottom line for Arkansas taxpayers: for the second month in a row, the “private” option costs are well above projections and above the federal cap. The Forbes article (authored by Josh Archambault and Jonathan Ingram of the Foundation for Government Accountability) outlines what could happen if “private” option costs continue to climb: ...under terms of the waiver signed by Governor Beebe and … [Read more...]

Holland And Rice Spar Over Legislative Records

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I wrote a few weeks ago about the Republican state Senate primary in District 9. Unlike other primaries this year, it’s the only race that features two incumbent legislators facing off against each other. Therefore, both candidates have voting records for voters -- and their opponent -- to examine and scrutinize. Personally, I think this is awesome: it gives us all a chance to measure the candidates not only by what they say they will do, but by what they have actually done. This dynamic lends … [Read more...]

Bowen Faculty: LEAP Over The Constitution

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You might recall that Bowen Law School Dean Michael Schwartz told us that the law school’s affirmative action plan, LEAP, was “just this side of Supreme Court decisions.” But we’ve recently discovered that even that declaration of borderline legality is an overstatement, according to some of Bowen’s administrators and faculty members. As we’ve noted before, the Constitution prohibits certain kinds of government-run, race-conscious admissions programs. In the context of LEAP, the Constitution’s … [Read more...]