Posted 4 years ago on Aug. 25, 2013, 8:46 a.m. EST by GirlFriday
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It’s not much of a dilemma. On the one hand, uninsured young people can get affordable, subsidized coverage on the Obamacare exchanges, with guidance from a “navigator” if they need it. On the other hand, they can get all FreedomWorksy defiant, incinerate a symbol, pay a fine for flouting federal law and live with the fear of massive medical debt incurred after an accident or illness.
Oddly, FreedomWorks defines everyone under the age of 40 as “young people.” In the days when young people burned actual, not fake, draft cards, they didn’t trust anyone over 30, which would include FreedomWorks CEO Matt Kibbe, 50, and former FreedomWorks chairman, Dick Armey, 72, who described the group as “dishonest” as he took $8 million last year to quit.
That’s right, insurance on the exchanges is subsidized, and therefore affordable to low-wage young people. That’s part of what the Obamacare navigators will explain over the next several months as they help the uninsured sign up for plans on the exchanges. The national exchange won’t be available until October. But California’s exchange prices are posted. There, a full-time worker earning the California minimum wage of $8 an hour would pay nothing for the cheapest plan.
Absolutely nothing. FreedomWorks is telling that worker to refuse free health insurance and pay a $95 fine because of, you know, “income redistribution.”
The next best health insurance plan on the California Exchange would cost all of $5 a month for a worker who earns less than $17,235 a year. That’s $35 a year less than the fine. A significantly better plan would cost that worker $63 a month — $756 a year. That’s a lot of money for a minimum wage worker. But the exchanges give workers the freedom to choose plans that fit their needs and budgets.