Obamacare’s Amazon Wish List Accounting

by Sean Hackbarth

Amazon.com's "Add to shopping cart"

Alyssia Canobio at Americans for Tax Reform points to a Washington Post story on the Obama administration’s unique approach to counting who they’ll consider to be enrolled in Obamacare:

“Health insurance plans only count subscribers as enrolled in a health plan once they’ve submited a payment. That is when the carrier sends out a member card and begins paying doctor bills.

When the Obama administration releases health law enrollment figures later this week, though, it will use a more expansive definition. It will count people who have purchased a plan as well as those who have a plan sitting in their online shopping cart but have not yet paid.

“In the data that will be released this week, ‘enrollment’ will measure people who have filled out an application and selected a qualified health plan in the marketplace,” said an administration official, who requested anonymity to frankly describe the methodology.”

Call it “Amazon Wish List” accounting, because the administration wishes more people would sign up for more expensive insurance plans.

Now, imagine if Jeff Bezos booked sales like the administration is about to count Obamacare enrollees. As Aaron Klein tweeted last night, he’d go to jail.

Or as Doug Powers writes:

Replace “Obama administration” in the above story with “Aetna” or some other insurance company and the Justice Department would already be filing charges.

I guess, when Healthcare.gov is a disaster of a website, you need creative accounting to salvage something from it.

[H/t memeorandum]

[Disclaimer: I'm dating Alyssa.]

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