There were few, if any, groups that were stronger backers of health care reform than unions. Unions are pretty good at seeking “more” as George Meany used to say. However, too much of a good thing (think state run pensions and health benefits for union members) may not be a good thing.
Let’s think about this.
Unions support Obamacare, Obamacare passes, regulations are issued eliminating virtually all limits on coverage, add new mandated benefits, expand eligibility and more thereby driving up premiums.
Individuals seeking coverage in 2014 will use health insurance exchanges and for those up to 400% of the poverty level there will be federal subsidies for premiums and in some cases out-of-pocket costs.
As the cost of health insurance or even employer/union self-funded plans is driven up, coverage become less affordable for everyone (and the cost of federal subsidies increases). That “everyone” includes union members in jointly managed health and welfare trust funds who may well have incomes under 400% of the poverty level, but who are not eligible for the subsidies within the exchanges.
The union/management trust funds could offset the higher premiums members have to pay, but to do so drives up the cost of doing business.
The unions have a better solution . . . make their members (about 20 million) eligible for the subsidies that are offered through the exchanges. Bazinga! Problem solved