|| Regulatory Issues Archive
Under the Dome by Joel Wood
The Odd Couple
The House Financial Services Committee leadership will change
this year. While the personalities are similar, the politics
may not be.
We suffer with anti-rebating laws because of a few abusers
selling personal lines.
Gridlock & Gridluck
Despite gridlock on Capitol Hill, there is some good news for
Sooner or later the political parties are going to have to work
together to constrain the unsustainable cost of healthcare.
To Be or Not to Be
Kill it all or don’t kill it at all? That is the
question. There’s no such thing as a partial death
sentence, except maybe for healthcare reform.
Tom Sawyer persuaded his friends to whitewash his fence. Barack
Obama has done the same with his claims that healthcare reform
will save money.
Insurance exchanges are halfway houses on the road to the hell
of government-run healthcare.
The New Normal
Congress is underperforming to a new low. And with an election
looming, don’t expect improvement. But is there a case
for last-minute tax reform that hits brokers in an appeal to
Obamacare was born of arcane reconciliation rules. It could die
Nobody’s buying the idea that Congress will compromise on
anything, but somehow it will all work out.
Imagine 2013: The House succeeds in partially repealing
Obamacare, and only the Republican Senate blocks its path to
completely rescinding healthcare reform.
Truth & Consequences
Debt ceiling legislation and the tattered economy will play
havoc on healthcare reform. But could the outcome be a
The Big Lie
The new state health insurance exchanges will raise government
costs, but federal officials refuse to acknowledge it.
The fight to deregulate goes on and on and…
Will Republicans and Democrats learn to get along again?
Too Much Booz
Booz Allen overestimates those who will stay with private
health coverage and snub government insurance exchanges in
Paying The Price
Call me paranoid, but will Obamacare build a two-tiered system
with Cadillac private coverage for highly skilled, high-demand
labor and public coverage for everyone else?
Logic Be Damned
Once again the NAIC shows the states’ self-interest
supersedes their ability to work together for uniform
Tweaks and Gouges
Healthcare reform won’t be repealed, but it is likely to
be changed in many smaller ways. One man’s legislative
tweak is another man’s gouge.
This ain’t New Hampshire—and it ain’t like
living with Mama. Welcome to gridlock.
If the Republicans take control of the House, will they bring
out the knives and slash funding for healthcare reform?
Council member firms will save millions in unnecessary
compliance costs thanks to federal reform of the surplus lines
The government’s healthcare reform will soon drive up
insurance premiums, but the rhetoric keeps pinning the blame on
In today’s hard-edged partisan congressional culture,
it’s nice to see some surplus thought going into
insurance legislation. The founding fathers would be proud.
We escaped some very bad reform legislation, but there is still
a lot to do and figure out.
Wing nuts from both parties feed the partisan frenzy in
Congress, and wishing for the old days to return is just
yearning for more of the same.
The Democrats’ healthcare reform initiative may have been
thwarted by the election of a 41st Republican senator, but
brokers still face some serious threats to their business.
It ain’t over ’til it’s over. Healthcare
reform now becomes a House-Senate showdown.
Yes, I understand paybacks are hell. But some of the proposed
health reforms are simply madness.
My Surplus Line
Love Me because I'm just not going away.
We have friends on both sides of the aisle, and our enemies on
one issue are our allies on another. And while we may
compromise, we will hang onto our principles.
Healthcare reform is a moving target. Unfortunately, that
target right now is insurers.
The 15% Solution
If a government health plan is imposed, will it be treated like
private plans? Pay premium taxes to states? Allow brokers to
Interest group differences stalled healthcare reform for years,
but Obama may now have the political muscle to make single
payer a reality.
What if you could create a healthcare plan that could undercut
competitors’ costs and force them to subsidize your plan?
That’s what Congress is considering.
The path of least resistance for Congress may prove hazardous
for insurance companies: federal regulation without preemption
of duplicative or conflicting state laws.
Rain on Our Parade
The excitement and exhilaration in our nation’s capital
don’t hide the anxiety over the potential consequences of
And you thought the economy would receive the mother lode of
Congressional angst. Just wait: Health insurance reform is
shaping up to be the mother of all political battles in 2009.
Yes We Can
Yes, we can predict the feds are coming, but what happens, no
one really knows. The only certainty is that gridlock is over.
We Have Options
The AIG debacle could change the way Congress views the
Optional Federal Charter.
This has nothing to do with women butting up against a federal
glass ceiling, but everything to do with my foggy crystal ball.
None of us saw this one coming. Framing regulatory reform as
free competition is getting Congress' attention.
Natural disasters bring out our best and worst. We’re not
as bad as our detractors paint us, nor are we as good as we
like to think we are.
He attacks group health insurance—the one part of the
health insurance system that actually works. Why destroy what
works instead of the other way around?
Playing the Percentages
In Washington, everybody wants to go to heaven, and nobody
wants to die. My job is to get something passed in my
lifetime—even if it’s not all that I want.
In the end, Spitzer unmasks his last victim: himself.
A Hair's Breadth
We are this close—just one misstep away from Congress
turning on us. Pray for good weather and good karma in 2008.
Bush may be loathed by most Americans, but for our industry,
he's looking better all the time. History may judge him kindly.
Massachusetts liberal Barney Frank is prolific in moving
legislation and a supporter of many of our key issues.
Taking the Lunge
If it feels like déjà vu all over again, it is.
Let’s dare to be different and move the optional federal
charter idea forward. A little drama never hurt anyone.
What? Me Worry?
I’m a partisan, inside-the-beltway Republican who
understands that conventional wisdom isn’t always.
It could be a tough fall for renewing the federal terrorism
backstop. A compromise in the works? Let’s hope it
doesn’t go down to the wire.
No Your Client
When you can’t even give your client a calendar, you know
anti-rebating laws are no longer about consumer protection, but
One Angry Man
Smart, Scrappy and Mad
Full Leader's Edge Archive. Previously published articles, listed by subject below.