Thursday morning, Rep. Greg Davids sent a letter to Gov. Dayton about MnSure. Here’s that letter:
In the letter, Rep. Davids highlighted the fact that the MnSure Board of Directors was given authority to vote on something called Active Purchaser. This paragraph hits at the heart of what’s wrong with the MnSure Board of Directors:
The reality is that active purchaser gives seven unelected, unaccountable board members the powers to decide what constitutes a “meaningful choice” for hard working Minnesotans and small businesses.
Here’s what’s wrong with this model:
Shortly aftrer its botched launch, MnSure revealed its vision for active purchaser in response to questions about the lack of choices in southeastern Minnesota. A MnSure representative told an audience in Owatonna that the opportunity to deny carriers from selling on MnSure will result in more competition and reduced costs.
Rep. Davids highlights the foolishness of that type of thinking in the next sentence:
In southeastern Minnesota, reducing options to increase choice and competitiveness is a mathematical impossibility.
I’d modify that statement slightly. I’d argue that reducing options to increase choice and competitiveness is a mathematical impossibility anywhere in the United States, not just in southeastern Minnesota.
I’d oppose this type of board whether the governor was a Republican or Democrat, mostly because it usurps the power of the legislature. Also, that part of the statute is written with vague language and platitudes:
As you may know, the MnSure enacting legislation provided the Board with broad, ambiguous power to limit the number of plans offered on the exchange starting in 2015. This arbitrary authority is based on innocent-sounding, but subjective and easily manipulated terms, such as “quality and value” and “meaningful choices.”
Those terms are subjective to give the board almost unlimited authority over the companies that provide these plans. In short, it’s potentially a legally sanctioned extortion racket. Anyone that thinks that’s tinfoil hat thinking is kidding themselves about the condition of the human race.
Anyone that’s taken an honest look at Ted Kaczynski or Timothy McVeigh must admit that humans are capable of doing exceptionally wicked things.
Finally, Rep. Davids gave Gov. Dayton sound advice that Gov. Dayton will ignore:
It would be much wiser use of MnSure’s time to focus on enhancements to the consumer experience, user security, and the still unaccomplished task of electronically transmitting to insurance companies the application and payment information of those attempting to enroll through MnSure.
In short, Rep. Davids is advising Gov. Dayton to fix what isn’t working first.
I know that’s radical thinking to Gov. Dayton but it works in the private sector every day.