1. Obamacare’s Bay State bailout and Commonwealth kickback. To bail out Massachusetts’s malfunctioning health-care exchange, President Obama and Governor Deval Patrick (before he left office) arranged for more than 300,000 state residents to receive temporary Medicaid coverage without any verification of eligibility, and for the state to get the most generous taxpayer-funded premium subsidies in the entire country.
2. Further delays of Obamacare’s employer mandate. On February 10, 2014, the administration announced that it would again be delaying the employer mandate. This particular delay gives mid-sized employers (those with 50 to 100 full-time employees, a category that doesn’t exist in the text of the law) until 2016 to provide coverage and relaxed some of the requirements for larger employers.
3. Extending Obamacare subsidies to non-exchange plans. The administration found in February 2014 that some exchanges were having difficulty determining people’s eligibility. And so now, owing to this “exceptional circumstance,” exchanges can grant retroactive coverage based on the application date rather than on the date of acceptance. Also, those enrolled in plans outside the exchanges who were then determined to be eligible for coverage could receive the subsidies granted to those in an exchange plan.