WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), chairman of the Subcommittee on Government Operations, introduced the Repeal Insurance Plans of the Multi-State Program Act (RIP MSP Act) on Tuesday — an effort to terminate Obamacare’s failing Multi-State Plan program.
Section 1334 of the Affordable Care Act requires the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to contract with at least two national health plans, one of which must be a non-profit plan, to compete directly with private plans in every state. These plans are called Multi-State Plans, or MSPs — and under current law, they are required to be available in all 50 states, as of 2017.
Multi-state plans were intended to drive competition on the health care exchanges. However, the program has failed to meet the Obama administration’s 750,000 enrollment projection or the 50-state statutory requirement. Only one state, Arkansas, has agreed to offer a MSP option in 2018, and it is likely that fewer than 2,000 Arkansans will participate. But the federal government is still funding the program at $10 million per year.
“This mandate is the definition of government waste. The program has failed to meet statutory requirements and is diverting necessary resources from what should be the OPM’s priorities, such as retirement and security backlogs. Congress needs to let the OPM focus on its job, eliminate this failed program and work to ensure health care is more affordable for all Americans,” said Sen. Ron Johnson.
“Multi-state plans were a poorly conceived provision of an even more poorly conceived bill, Obamacare,” Rep. Meadows said, “and repealing these plans would be a good step toward getting our health care system back on track. It makes no sense for the OPM to dedicate its finite resources toward the creation of government plans that clearly do little, other than stifling the competition our health insurance market so desperately needs. The OPM should not be in the business of contracting health insurance plans. I’m grateful to work with Senator Johnson on this bill as we seek to restore common sense, market-based principles to our health care industry that will bring premiums and overall costs down and help make quality care affordable for all Americans.”