Some health care premiums are more equal than others

Regional inequities in health care reform

In the pending health care bills, low-income individuals and families who buy health insurance outside employment will get large government subsidies. Those subsidies vary by locale. This represents a significant implicit policy decision with enormous distributional and political consequences. I don’t think most Members or their constituents have focused on this. I think they should.

In local, practical terms, this will mean that Lansing taxpayers will subsidize Detroit residents to the tune of nearly $2,000 per family per year. Grand Rapids taxpayers will subsidize Detroit residents to the tune of nearly $4,000 per year and Lansing residents by approximately $2,000 per family per year. (Click the opening link for more. Recommended.)

That’s bad enough, but all Michigan taxpayers will be subsidizing health insurance in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island, among other States.

H/T Carpe Diem:

The average annual premium for individual coverage was $2,985, but ranged from a low of $2,606 in Iowa to $6,630 in New York. Family coverage ranges from $5,120 in North Carolina to $13,296 in New York.

Rather than promote competition by promoting a free market; i.e., by removing State borders as a limit to insurance companies offering health care, the Feds are going to redistribute your money into the most expensive health care plans. You can afford it, people in New Jersey need it. John Corzine is smiling.

This redistribution of wealth as health insurance is nothing new, of course, you’re already paying for solid platinum Congressional health insurance, whose members are specifically excluding themselves from health care “reform” in the Baucus bill.