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Expand chart
Data: Kaiser Family Foundation; Note: 2019 analysis based on healthcare.gov filings as of Oct. 24, 2018; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

The Affordable Care Act’s insurance marketplaces will be more competitive next year than they were this year, according to a report yesterday from the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Yes, but: 2018 was the low point for ACA competition. The marketplaces still aren’t back to where they were in their best years — 2015 and 2016, when only a handful of ACA customers didn’t have a choice of insurers.

By the numbers: Insurers started bailing on the exchanges in 2017 and continued in 2018, leaving more than a quarter of ACA customers with only one available insurer.

  • Now that’s down to 17%. But there’s a long way to go before the competition is healthy again.

ACA enrollment, meanwhile, continues to lag noticeably behind last year's pace.

  • A little less than 1.2 million people have selected insurance plans through HealthCare.gov in the first 2 weeks of this open enrollment period — about 300,000 fewer than in the first 2 weeks of the last enrollment season.
  • Last year's "first 2 weeks" update included an extra day from this year's. But that alone does not explain such a steep drop.

Go deeper

Updated 48 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Report: Pentagon watchdog finds Ronny Jackson drank on duty and harassed staff

Rep. Ronny Jackson walking through the Canon Tunnel to the U.S. Capitol in January. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) allegedly made "sexual and denigrating" comments about a female staffer, drank alcohol and took sleeping medication while working as White House physician, according to an official report obtained by CNN Tuesday night.

Driving the news: The Department of Defense inspector general's report stems from a years-long investigation. Jackson has called the allegations "false and fabricated."

DOJ pressed to enforce Al Jazeera foreign agent ruling

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Justice Department is being pressed to enforce its own demand that the U.S. arm of Qatari broadcaster Al Jazeera register as a foreign agent.

Why it matters: The launch of Al Jazeera's new right-of-center U.S. media venture, Rightly, has refocused attention on the media company's alleged links to Doha, and DOJ's efforts to crack down on media outlets viewed as foreign interest mouthpieces.

Poll: Immigration is America's most-polarizing issue

Data: The American Aspirations Index/Populace; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Immigration was found to be the most polarizing issue in America based on new polling from Populace.

Why it matters: Americans have surprisingly similar priorities for the U.S., but immigration stands out as one of the few issues with clear partisan differences. It underscores the challenge for advocates and lawmakers hoping to pass immigration reform in the coming weeks amid narrow margins in Congress.