Seema Verma Edges Higher in 2018 Brass Balls Sweepstakes

Bill Clark/Congressional Quarterly/Newscom via ZUMA

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Last December Republicans eliminated Obamacare’s individual mandate, which had required everyone to buy individual insurance. “By repealing the individual mandate at the heart of Obamacare,” Paul Ryan said, “we are giving back the freedom and the flexibility to buy the health care that’s right for you and your family.” However, repeal of the mandate also had a drawback. According to the CBO:

Average premiums in the nongroup market would increase by about 10 percent in most years of the decade…relative to CBO’s baseline projections.

A few weeks ago, Gov. Phil Murphy signed a bill that restored the individual mandate for the state of New Jersey. Today, Donald Trump’s administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Seema Verma, tweeted her approval:

I know this is no longer a politically correct phrase, but can you even fathom the brass balls it takes to say this? Republicans repealed the individual mandate, which increased Obamacare premiums by about 10 percent. The Democratic governor and legislature of New Jersey restored the mandate, which eliminated the premium increase and maybe even reduced it a bit. And then the Republican CMS administrator responded by tweeting her congratulations for “addressing the failures of Obamacare.”

Brass. Fucking. Balls.

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is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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