“Bill Hobson” found that ♡bamaCare!!! made his individual coverage plan not only unaffordable, but also less cover-y. He checked to see if he would be eligible for subsidies, and sure enough he would. So he got on the web to sign up for ♡bamaCare!!! like a good citizen. Just that was a months-long process, but here’s what happened next:
I finished and, as the website clearly states, at the risk of perjury gave my e-signature verifying that I had provided true information.
Finally, I got my result. Despite what every online calculator had indicated, I would not be eligible for a tax credit: the only reason I had gone through the gol-darned process to begin with.
I called the toll-free support number and asked why the website had denied me tax credits. The pleasant-sounding young man who answered took a quick look at my income information and agreed that it looked like I should be eligible. Then he started asking how I had answered the multiple questions the application process requires. When he asked whether I had indicated I currently have health insurance, I said I had … because I do have health insurance.
“Ah,” he said, “that may be the problem.”
Wait, I said, are you telling me that to qualify for tax credits — the only reason to sign up on the Obamacare website, as compared to buying directly from the insurance company — that I can’t already have health insurance?
He replied that was correct.
Here’s where I would normally add “That Means It’s Working™,” but we haven’t gotten to the really good part yet. Here you go:
But surely, I maintained, thinking of two people I know of who got tax credits in circumstances similar to mine, I can’t be the only self-employed person who’s applying for tax credits who already has insurance. How do other people qualify?
There was a pause on the phone line, then the young man said, “Well, I’m sure that not all people give the, uh, correct answer to all the questions.”
He didn’t say it, but he might as well have added, “Hint, hint.”
Thus it was that, on the afternoon of March 6, 2014, a representative of the U.S. Government encouraged me to lie before God and the IRS about my health insurance status when applying for ♡bamaCare!!!.
In Obama’s America, honesty is a sucker’s game.