Romney White House Gives Health Insurers Fits

Industry could fave upheaval if he repeals ObamaCare
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 29, 2012 1:09 PM CDT
Mitt Romney speaks as running mate Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and his wife Janna listen during a campaign rally at the Marion County Fairgrounds in Marion, Ohio, Sunday, Oct. 28, 2012.   (AP Photo/Mike Munden)

(Newser) – CEOs of big health insurance companies are surely salivating for a Mitt Romney presidency, right? Not necessarily, the AP reports. Though the insurance industry is no big fan of certain parts of ObamaCare, it has invested tens of millions preparing for it—and it stands to make scads of dollars off the millions of new people it'll add to its rolls. Since Romney’s been promising to repeal the Affordable Care Act, that leaves insurers in, as the AP puts it, “a quandary.” "I spend a lot of time in executive offices and board rooms, and they are good Republicans who would like to see Romney win," says a consultant. "But they are scared to death about what he's going to do."

If Romney wins, insurers will be in limbo for months, as legal ObamaCare deadlines loom but the question of repeal hangs overhead. Much depends on Congress, which at this point has not reached bipartisan middle ground on the health care issue. The worst-case scenario for insurers: Republicans repeal the individual mandate, but still require insurance companies to extend coverage to all, including people with health problems. Informal discussions between the industry and the Romney camp are already under way. Click for more. (Read more ObamaCare stories.)

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