Debra Saunders | Health Reform or Musical Chairs?

Democrats championed the Affordable Care Act to increase the number of Americans with health coverage, but their plan led to the cancellation of private plans for about 5 million Americans, according to The Associated Press. Unless they qualify for subsidies, many now face higher premiums, often for plans that limit access to doctors.

“More than 9 million Americans have signed up for private health insurance or Medicaid coverage,” the president boasted Tuesday.

Warning: Washington Post fact checker Glenn Kessler called the claim that 6.3 million have signed on to Medicaid “fuzzy,” given that many enrollees might have qualified outside Obamacare. Also, the claim that 3 million have enrolled in exchanges is “open to question” because the figure includes those who haven’t paid premiums.

A recent McKinsey & Co. survey reported, “Only 11 percent of consumers who bought new coverage under the law were previously uninsured.” More than half of those who chose not to participate cited “affordability” as a big factor.

“If this keeps up there won’t be a ‘death spiral,'” industry graybeard Robert Laszewski quipped in his blog.

“Heck, so far the insurers are just re-enrolling their old customers at higher rates!”

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