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Member since: Mon Oct 31, 2016, 08:09 PM
Number of posts: 11,903

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Article: Government health care is overtaking private coverage


A surge in Medicaid enrollment during the coronavirus pandemic is pushing the United States near a momentous tipping point: More people getting health care coverage through a government plan than through the private sector.

Here’s the math. A record 80.5 million Americans now get health coverage through Medicaid and a related program for children. Another 64 million are Medicare enrollees. The Affordable Care Act covers about 13 million Americans, the Pentagon’s Tricare system 9.6 million, and the Veterans Administration another 9 million. There are some duplicates, such as 11 million people who get both Medicaid and Medicare, and others who have coverage through the military as well as another plan. At a minimum, about 150 million Americans get coverage through a government plan, and the number could be several million higher.

Private-sector companies covered 158 million Americans in 2019, but job losses during the coronavirus pandemic probably cut that to around 153 million, including dependents. So the number of people covered through a company plan is very close to those covered by the government. Another 5 million or so buy private coverage on their own, with no government aid, but new federal subsidies in this part of the market will probably cut that number, too...

More government health care seems to be fine with voters. A recent Morning Consult poll found that 68% of respondents favor Biden’s public option, which, notably, leaves private insurance in place. Voters generally want new programs only if they’ll offer new benefits without taking away existing ones. Though nobody planned it that way, that’s how government-sponsored health care has evolved during the last 20 years or so.

All thanks to our great POTUS!!
Our young adult kids who work for smaller firms are on Obamacare. Long as they leave that in place i'm good

Reuters: U.S. appeals court puts on hold overturning of California assault weapon ban


U.S. appeals court puts on hold overturning of California assault weapon ban
(Reuters) - A U.S. federal appeals court on Monday put on hold a judge's ruling this month to overturn California's 32-year-old ban on assault weapons.

A three-judge panel in the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a stay of U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez's June 4 order, after California officials had appealed the federal judge's decision to strike down the ban on assault-style weapons.

California Attorney General Rob Bonta, who had appealed against the decision to overturn the ban, said the state's assault weapons laws would remain in effect while appellate proceedings continue.

"We won't stop defending these life-saving laws," Bonta said https://bit.ly/3xFCQ6q on Twitter.


Yahoo Money: Stimulus led 'to dramatic declines in material hardship' amid the pandemic, data shows

"The last two stimulus packages significantly reduced the number of Americans suffering from hunger, financial hardship, anxiety and depression, a new study found.

Financial instability fell by 45% from December 2020 to April 2021, according to a new paper by Poverty Solutions at the University of Michigan. Additionally, food insufficiency decreased over 40% and mental health symptoms dropped by 20%.

“Following the December COVID Relief bill and then again from the American Rescue Plan passed in March, you see dramatic declines in material hardship experienced by U.S. households,” Patrick Cooney, a professor at the University of Michigan who co-authored the study with Luke Shaefer, told Yahoo Finance Live (video above). “Just an amazing and dramatic sign that stimulus checks and expanded unemployment insurance are doing an awful long way to support U.S. households in the pandemic.”

As part of those packages, Americans received two rounds of stimulus checks — $600 per person checks were distributed in the winter and $1,400 per person payments were sent out in the spring. Additionally, unemployed workers received extra weekly benefits of $300 during the same period. Both measures helped alleviate financial hardship for U.S. households, according to Cooney, which, in turn, helped to lessen mental health issues.

Declines in material hardship were greatest among low-income households. At the end of 2020, 28.6% of households making below $25,000 reported that paying for usual household expenses was very difficult. That number dropped to 16.1% in April as the $1,400 checks were distributed.

Food scarcity also fell at a record pace, driven by a steep decline in hardship among low-income households. Between December 2020 and April 2021, the number of adults earning below $25,000 who reported food insufficiency fell by over 3 million. Additionally, food insecurity significantly dropped for households making between $50,000 and $100,000, the paper found.

‘In a better bargaining position to get higher wages going forward’
Improved mental health also coincided with the implementation of the two relief bills. More than two thirds of adults reported feeling nervous, anxious, or on edge in December, but six months later, just over half of adults felt that way.

Despite these benefits, critics now argue that the pandemic benefits — specifically the jobless programs — are keeping workers from returning to their jobs. Twenty-five GOP-led states plan to opt out of federal unemployment programs this month even though they expire on September 6.

Despite missing estimates in April and May, overall job growth has been faster than in past recessions, according to Cooney, and workers will come back as the economy reopens. They also may be able to negotiate higher wages, he said.

And these damn 25 red states are denying unemployment benefits to residents in between jobs
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