6,500,000 Million Americans paid a fine rather than signing up for Obamacare Coverage

by Scott Rasmussen
August 9, 2017

The individual healthcare mandate requires every American to buy health insurance or pay a fine. In 2016, 6.5 million Americans chose to pay the fine rather than sign up for insurance on the Obamacare exchanges.[1]

The mandate has always been the most unpopular part of President Obama’s healthcare law, officially known as the Affordable Care Act. In addition to those who pay the fine rather than buy the mandated levels of insurance, 15 million people would drop their Obamacare coverage if it were legal to do so.

This does not necessarily mean that these individuals want to go without insurance. Obamacare requires every insurance policy to cover a set of what it defines as Essential Health Benefits.[2] The more benefits that a plan covers, the more expensive it is. Some people might prefer to buy less comprehensive insurance at a lower cost. For example, one option might be to buy insurance only for major healthcare costs such as surgeries or hospitalizations.

Since most Americans receive health insurance from their employer, the rising cost of healthcare is a key factor holding down wage growth. If the cost of benefits were the same today as a generation ago, the average pay for full-time workers would be more than $3,300 higher annually. Some people might prefer a bigger paycheck and less comprehensive coverage.

Healthcare policy analyst Bob Laszewski believes the ongoing unpopularity o

31 Comments - what are your thoughts?

  • Bob says:

    So 6.5 Million preferred to pay the fine. What’s the big deal. It was their choice. Were these “religious objectors” ever in the Military? Did they refuse to defend their Country because God told them not to kill anyone? How convenient it is to be an “objector” SOMETIMES.Hmmmmm!!

  • ARJAY says:

    “6,500,000 Million Americans paid a fine rather than signing up for Obamacare Coverage”

    That’s 6.5 million MILLION OR 6,500,000,000,000,000= 6,500 TRILLION Americans?!

    That should have paid off ALL of our debt!! That’s ALMOST 10 (ten) times the population of the entire earth!

    Will you authors of these articles PLEASE PROOFREAD?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

    If you can’t get the HEADLINE CORRECT what OTHER errors are in the articles.

    Should we even BOTHER to read the articles do to the lack of CREDIBILITY in the HEADLINES alone?!?!

    1. Bob says:

      Now that’s what you call fake news!

  • David says:

    I was seriously considering being among those that wouldn’t sign up for Obamacare, till I learned of an EXEMPTION written into Obamacare for faith-based wellness programs (mine is Medishare). I exercised that option and didn’t have to pay a fine for NOT signing up for something I had religious objections to (it’s tongue-in-cheek endorsement of abortion, aka MURDER of the unborn). By going that way I was able to: 1)obey God’s direction NOT TO KILL 2) obey the laws of the goverment (instituted among men by God’s directive, also over-throwable by God)

  • JMICHAEL270 says:

    And yet the politicians in Washington and their staffers have a Comprehensive Cadillac Plan. They should be required to have the same healthcare as the people they represent…..no exception!!!!!!!!!!!!&

    1. Bob says:

      Obama allowed an exemption for them because the ACA required Congress and staff to get ACA coverage. This exemption allowed these people to get top plans with the gov’t paying, I think, 70% of the premium cost. It’s also basically illegal.

      1. ARJAY says:

        We TAXPAYERS paid, NOT the gubbermint.

        We need to get over the idea that the “gubbermint pays” and instead refer to we TAXPAYERS that pay!

      2. keedon says:

        Congress has had that medical coverage for decades. It has nothing to do with Obamacare.

        1. BH says:

          Not so. In the ACA, one of the only things that the GOP got in was the requirement the Congress and their staff had to use it. But in true DC style, when the staff discovered it was going to cost too much money, they made a deal with Obama that the govt would cover a lot of their premiums, even though that is not allowed under the rules. Thus they can put themselves ahead of us yet again.

          1. keedon says:

            The ACA was originally intended for 40 million low income and welfare people to provide taxpayer health insurance. Since the 40 million never got the coverage anyway it all is moot. Obama wanted to provide the black population also with mortgages. Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac gave mortgages to people who couldn’t even afford the 10% down. When the owners started to default the banks and mortgage companies started to go out of business and that is what led to the collapse of 2009.

    2. Rodney Steward says:

      I totally agree, if they had to they would come up with something good real fast and stop all the BS!!

    3. ARJAY says:

      Agreed, but they ONLY represent THEMSELVES!

    4. keedon says:

      They have had that medical coverage for decades. It has nothing to do with Obamacare. Besides not one Republican voted for Obamacare when it came before the Congress.

  • Webb says:

    6.5 million patriots refused to be Forced to Purchase a Product by The Federal Government…
    Paying a Fine, Imposed by Government Overreach…
    Repeal…We Wait!

    1. Bob says:

      In 2013, at age 63, my policy I had before the ACA went into effect was dropped. The policy I was offered as replacement was 30% higher premium, 50% higher deductible and 150% higher out of pocket. I said no and found a policy outside the system that cost 50% as much with less than 33% as much deductible and over 55% less out of pocket. The result was when my wife had to have eye surgery we saved OVER $9000 during that 6 month period.

      1. ARJAY says:

        Good for you!!

        We NEED to have COMPLETE REPEAL of the so called “AFFORDABLE care act”. NOTHING “affordable” about it!

        Let the free market and COMPETITION “replace” the oblamodon’tcare act!!

  • Retired says:

    It should have never been a mandate ,no wonder the supreme court called it a TAX and not health care. Eliminate the ACA and start investigating the Insurance companies over price gouging .

    1. Bob says:

      Insurance companies lost money under the ACA, even with the high per cent cost allowed to be built into the policies. That’s why they are dropping out of the program.

      1. Retired says:

        They were involved with setting up the ACA , so they Screwed themselves and expect the Tax Payer to BAIL them out is what it boils down to . They are no better than the Mortgage Companies with their bail out .

        1. Bob says:

          Except this was a designed (by the Democrat Party) bailout that the gov’t (Obama admin) knew would not cover costs. The ACA was designed to fail as a first step toward gov’t controlled and run healthcare system. And we would definitely be there now if Hillary had won. Now we just need to keep the pressure on Murrkowski, Collins and McCain to get them to see the light and vote to eliminate the ACA.

          1. Retired says:

            You got that RIGHT , I doubt the 3 stooges will change their mind .The Only solution is to kill the whole ACA .What they lost on the program will offset the big profits they make on other plans .

    2. keedon says:

      Obamacare was created and passed by a Demwit controlled Congress. It ws signed into law by Obama. The insurance companies were running the government controlled programs instead of being independent. They weren’t independent anymore.

  • Rick D. says:

    This 6.5 M. people who elected to pay fine rather than be a part of Obamacare should NOT be counted as those who will lose coverage under Trump’s plan. However, in the last study by CBO, this group WAS included. This is unfair and yields a distorted, negative result concerning Trumpcare.

    1. Bob says:

      Also, deep in the explanations by the CBO concerning why they had decided the way they did on the House version they admitted they could not figure out how to determine what would be defined as a person having coverage under the House policies. So what they decided was that is a person did not have a policy that met ALL the requirements and mandates of an ACA policy, that person was not covered and thus would be considered to not be insured. How’s that for being nonpartisan?

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      2. Rick D. says:

        You make an excellent point. By adopting that criterion, the CBO inflates the # of those who are NOT covered. This, in turn, creates the same effect when Trump’s plan is assessed.

      3. keedon says:

        When Obamacare was passed it was by a Dem controlled Congress and not one Republican voted for it. Remember Piglosi said you had to vote for the bill before you could see what was in it.

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    2. ARJAY says:

      Reread the headline, headline states 6.5 million MILLION!

      What else was wrong in the article?

      1. Rick D. says:

        You’re right…my bad!! I knew it was 6-1/2 million, but I temporarily forgot that M=thousand. Thanks for correcting my faux pas. (If it’d been 6,500, I probably would’ve ignored it!).

        1. ARJAY says:

          When I first looked at it I missed it too. But something just didn’t look right. Then I paid attention to what the headline REALLY said! (I have a thing with numbers, I seem to be able to see patterns.)

          If the authors can’t get the HEADLINE correct, what else is incorrect in the article?!

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