Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Joe Sonka: I see insured people!

Left-wing journalist Joe Sonka has a very funny way of advocating for ObamaCare in Kentucky. His latest effort reminded me a lot of the line from the spooky, supernatural "The Sixth Sense" movie from 1999 in which the main character whispered eerily "I see dead people."

Sonka is upset that Alison Grimes took her U.S. Senate campaign to Perry County without mentioning the "Affordable Care Act."

But an examination of enrollment numbers through Kynect, Kentucky’s state insurance exchange made possible by the Affordable Care Act, shows that the uninsured rate dropped more dramatically in Perry County (where Hazard is located) than in any other Kentucky county.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s Small Area Health Insurance Estimates, in 2012 there were 19,773 residents in Perry County with health insurance coverage, and 4,202 residents with no coverage. However, by the signup deadline this April, 5,509 people in Perry County had signed up for insurance through Kynect. Assuming the Beshear administration’s statewide estimate that 75 percent of Kynect enrollees were not previously insured (as stated on their application), this means Perry County’s uninsured rate may have dropped from over 17 percent to less than 1 percent.

We are deep into imaginary friend territory here. No one knows how wildly inaccurate the Census Bureau's guess at rates of coverage by health insurance are, but we can only hope it's not worse than Beshear's ridiculous twin claims that 75% of exchange health insurance enrollees were previously uninsured as were 75% of ObamaCare Medicaid enrollees. Current and former "exchange" employees and contractors reported repeatedly that their computers kicked out entries defining applicants as possessing prior insurance coverage, so it is very safe to assume Beshear simply made up both numbers.

Taking two very questionable data points and concluding from them that the uninsured rate in Perry County "may have dropped from over 17 percent to less than 1 percent," much less that the fantasy should be touted as fact in a U.S. Senate race, may run a thrill up the leg of Obamacrats and Beshear lackeys, but such science fiction writing does nothing to advance real public policy discussion.