Feb 1, 2017

Anthem pushing hard for Obamacare fixes

Matthew Hurst / Flickr Creative Commons

Anthem CEO Joe Swedish said Wednesday that the individual market under Obamacare "has not been working well," and his insurance company is aggressively lobbying Congress to make specific changes, which could determine the extent of Anthem's Obamacare participation in 2018.

Anthem's biggest demands: Repeal the health insurance tax (which is temporarily suspended for this year), extend so-called "grandmother" plans (pre-Obamacare policies) indefinitely, decrease the number of exemptions for special enrollments, and prohibit third parties (such as dialysis groups) from steering patients into Obamacare plans when they are eligible for Medicare or Medicaid.

Why this matters: Anthem is one of the biggest publicly traded health insurers in the Obamacare marketplaces, covering about 839,000 exchange enrollees as of Dec. 31. If Anthem doesn't get what it wants and retreats, that would be a huge blow to the marketplaces — perhaps destabilizing. It's worth noting, though, that Anthem expects to break even or be even slightly profitable on its Obamacare plans for 2017.

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Updated 7 mins ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. cities crack down on protesters

Demonstrators gather at Lafayette Park across from the White House to protest the death of George Floyd in Washington, D.C. Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Major U.S. cities have implemented curfews and called on National Guard to mobilize as thousands of demonstrators gather across the nation to continue protesting the death of George Floyd.

The state of play: Hundreds have already been arrested as tensions continue to rise between protesters and local governments. Protesters are setting police cars on fire as freeways remain blocked and windows are shattered, per the Washington Post. Law enforcement officials are using tear gas and rubber bullets to try to disperse crowds and send protesters home.

Updated 52 mins ago - Politics & Policy

George Floyd protests: What you need to know

Photo: David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

Clashes erupted between police and protesters in several major U.S. cities Saturday night as demonstrations over the death of George Floyd and other police-related killings of black men spread across the U.S. Saturday.

The big picture: Floyd's death in Minneapolis police custody is the latest reminder of the disparities between black and white communities in the U.S. and comes as African Americans grapple with higher death rates from the coronavirus and higher unemployment from trying to stem its spread.

Trump to invite Russia and other non-member G7 countries to summit

President Trump at Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Saturday. Photo: Saul Martinez/Getty Images

President Trump told reporters on Saturday evening he would postpone the G7 summit to September and expand the meeting to more nations that are not members of the Group of 7.

Details: Trump said he would invite Russia, South Korea, Australia and India to the summit, according to a pool report. "I don’t feel that as a G7 it properly represents what’s going on in the world. It’s a very outdated group of countries," he said.