Debate Over California’s Proposition 45
The ballot initiative would give the elected state insurance commissioner the power to regulate health insurance rates for small businesses and individuals. Proponents say it would make the rate-setting process more transparent. But a coalition of hospitals, doctors and health plans contend it would give too much power to one person.
Associated Press: Proposition 45 Seeks Health Insurance Review
Proposition 45 offers a simple choice for voters: Do they want the state insurance commissioner to regulate health care rates for small businesses and individual health plans? The campaign fight over whether that would be beneficial for consumers is much more complicated. Initiative proponents, led by Democratic Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones and Consumer Watchdog, a Santa Monica-based consumer group with backing from attorneys, say the initiative would add transparency to the rate-setting process and force health insurance companies to justify their decisions. Opponents, including a coalition of hospitals, doctors and firefighters with major funding from health plans, say it would have a detrimental effect on California's ability to deliver lower-cost health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. They say it's a flawed initiative that would give too much power to the insurance commissioner (Lin, 10/4).
San Jose Mercury News: Reality Check: New Prop. 45 Ad Only Partially True
Proposition 45 would allow California's elected insurance commissioner to regulate health plan rates for 6 million Californians with individual policies or who get their insurance as employees of small businesses. The commissioner already has the power to reject proposed rate hikes for auto and homeowners insurance (Seipel, 10/5).
Los Angeles Times: Insurance Commissioner Race Pits Two Starkly Different Candidates
Few jobs at the state Capitol have more effect on citizen pocketbook issues than California's elected insurance commissioner. The commissioner oversees a $123-billion-a-year industry that includes automobile, homeowner and dozens of other types of insurance coverage that most Californians are required to purchase. And a fight is underway over how much power to give the office over the hot-button issue of health insurance rates (Lifsher, 10/5).