In 1871, State insurance regulators created the National Association of Insurance Commissioners to address the need to coordinate regulation of multistate insurers.

In 1945, the insurance industry was granted an Anti-Trust exemption, giving the responsibility to states to regulate insurance, in response to a Supreme Court ruling stating otherwise. In short, Congress passed a law to overturn the Supreme Court.

There is no longer any excuse to allow this to continue. If we are reforming health care, this must be addressed.

Is there any fact on the ground that would indicate that we don’t need the protection offered by Anti-Trust laws re: the health insurance industry?

I know, more health care details. OVERLOAD. However, the Anti-Trust exemption for this despicable industry is more costly than the GOPs hang up with Tort Reform. Without the protections of Anti-Trust, we will never be able to reign in the cost of health care insurance. It’s just that simple.

So, while you’re making those calls, please ask your Congressional Reps to repeal this outdated, antiquated, and quite frankly, harmful exemption.

I blame this organization and the Insurance Commissioners for the states for our dilemma, quite frankly. If you go to the link below and read their mission statement, it’s hard not to give them a great big FAIL! I has all the appearance of the fox watching the hen house, quite frankly.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is the organization of insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the five U.S. territories. The NAIC provides a forum for the development of uniform policy when uniformity is appropriate.

A state regulator’s primary responsibility is to protect the interests of insurance consumers, and the NAIC helps regulators fulfill that obligation. That assistance is related to the regulators’ shared objectives of financial and market conduct regulation.

State insurance regulators created the NAIC in 1871 to address the need to coordinate regulation of multistate insurers. The first major step in that process was the development of uniform financial reporting by insurance companies. Since then, new legislative concepts, new levels of expertise in data collection and delivery, and a commitment to even greater technological capability have moved the NAIC forward into its role as a multidimensional, regulatory support organization.

http://www.naic.org/index_about.htm

The NAIC home page is here:
http://www.naic.org/

Regulate multistate insurers? since 1871? And, in 1945, insurers are exempted from Anti-Trust because the states alone are empowered to regulate them? Palease.

The following is a walk through of how we got to where we are today regarding Anti-Trust enforcement.

Government intervention in the economy to preserve competition has been national policy in the United States since the late 19th century. Enforcement of antitrust laws, however, has varied over the years, depending upon U.S. Supreme Court decisions, the policies of particular Presidential administrations, and public opinion. There are both federal and state antitrust laws. State laws, however, are seldom invoked today.

http://history.howstuffworks.com/american-history/antitrust-laws.htm

During the 1980’s, the antitrust laws were not rigorously enforced. Corporate mergers and acquisitions greatly increased. In the 1990’s there was a resurgence in federal antitrust prosecutions.

http://history.howstuffworks.com/american-history/antitrust-laws3.htm

During the presidential campaign, now-President Obama vowed to “reinvigorate antitrust enforcement.”[1] He sharply criticized the Bush administration as having the “weakest record of antitrust enforcement of any administration in the last half century.”[2] In particular, Obama faulted the Bush administration’s record in merger challenges. He has cited statistics showing that between 2001 and 2006, the antitrust agencies challenged mergers at less than half the rate of challenges during the prior four years under the Clinton administration

http://www.mofo.com/news/updates/files/15173.html

2009 is the era of merger mania
The first half of 2009 has already seen four mega merger/acquisitions as patent expiry of blockbuster molecules, regulatory hurdles, generics competition and a low R&D productivity lead to lower stock valuations stock – a situation exacerbated by the current economic climate.

One clear outcome of the rapid consolidation of the pharmaceutical industry would be the augmented bargaining power of big pharma vis-à-vis payors and the government, say the analysts. But further strengthening of the big pharma cartel may not necessarily provide benefits to the patients.

http://www.biovalley.ch/content.cfm?nav=4&content=10&command=details&id=10319

The McCarran-Ferguson Act of 1945 (15 U.S.C.A. § 1011 et seq.) gives states the authority to regulate the "business of insurance" without interference from federal regulation, unless federal law specifically provides otherwise.

http://law.jrank.org/pages/8497/McCarran-Ferguson-Act-1945.html#ixzz0ZaeL3cBm

Read more: McCarran-Ferguson Act of (1945)
http://law.jrank.org/pages/8497/McCarran-Ferguson-Act-1945.html\

Wiki offers some subtle variations in it’s evaluation of the McCarran-Ferguson Act of 1945:

The McCarran–Ferguson Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1011-1015, is a United States federal law that exempts insurance companies from the federal anti-trust legislation that applies to most businesses[1] and allows state law to regulate the business of insurance without federal government interference. The McCarran–Ferguson Act was passed by Congress in 1945 after the Supreme Court ruled in United States v. South-Eastern Underwriters Association that the federal government could regulate insurance companies under the authority of the Commerce Clause in the U.S. Constitution.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McCarran–Ferguson_Act

For those with legal training, this abstract is interesting:

Are Conglomerate Insurance Mergers Sui Generis, by David R. Kamerschen

http://www.jstor.org/pss/252049

And Patrick Leahy is quite clear. Anti-Trust exemption for insurance companies is not helpful and needs to be repealed:

In 1871, State insurance regulators created the National Association of Insurance Commissioners to address the need to coordinate regulation of multistate insurers.

In 1945, the insurance industry was granted an Anti-Trust exemption, giving the responsibility to states to regulate insurance, in response to a Supreme Court ruling stating otherwise. In short, Congress passed a law to overturn the Supreme Court.

There is no longer any excuse to allow this to continue. If we are reforming health care, this must be addressed.

Is there any fact on the ground that would indicate that we don’t need the protection offered by Anti-Trust laws re: the health insurance industry?

I know, more health care details. OVERLOAD. However, the Anti-Trust exemption for this despicable industry is more costly than the GOPs hang up with Tort Reform. Without the protections of Anti-Trust, we will never be able to reign in the cost of health care insurance. It’s just that simple.

So, while you’re making those calls, please ask your Congressional Reps to repeal this outdated, antiquated, and quite frankly, harmful exemption.

I blame this organization and the Insurance Commissioners for the states for our dilemma, quite frankly. If you go to the link below and read their mission statement, it’s hard not to give them a great big FAIL! I has all the appearance of the fox watching the hen house, quite frankly.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) is the organization of insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia and the five U.S. territories. The NAIC provides a forum for the development of uniform policy when uniformity is appropriate.

A state regulator’s primary responsibility is to protect the interests of insurance consumers, and the NAIC helps regulators fulfill that obligation. That assistance is related to the regulators’ shared objectives of financial and market conduct regulation.

State insurance regulators created the NAIC in 1871 to address the need to coordinate regulation of multistate insurers. The first major step in that process was the development of uniform financial reporting by insurance companies. Since then, new legislative concepts, new levels of expertise in data collection and delivery, and a commitment to even greater technological capability have moved the NAIC forward into its role as a multidimensional, regulatory support organization.

http://www.naic.org/index_about.htm

The NAIC home page is here:
http://www.naic.org/

Regulate multistate insurers? since 1871? And, in 1945, insurers are exempted from Anti-Trust because the states alone are empowered to regulate them? Palease.

The following is a walk through of how we got to where we are today regarding Anti-Trust enforcement.

Government intervention in the economy to preserve competition has been national policy in the United States since the late 19th century. Enforcement of antitrust laws, however, has varied over the years, depending upon U.S. Supreme Court decisions, the policies of particular Presidential administrations, and public opinion. There are both federal and state antitrust laws. State laws, however, are seldom invoked today.

http://history.howstuffworks.com/american-history/antitrust-laws.htm

During the 1980’s, the antitrust laws were not rigorously enforced. Corporate mergers and acquisitions greatly increased. In the 1990’s there was a resurgence in federal antitrust prosecutions.

http://history.howstuffworks.com/american-history/antitrust-laws3.htm

During the presidential campaign, now-President Obama vowed to “reinvigorate antitrust enforcement.”[1] He sharply criticized the Bush administration as having the “weakest record of antitrust enforcement of any administration in the last half century.”[2] In particular, Obama faulted the Bush administration’s record in merger challenges. He has cited statistics showing that between 2001 and 2006, the antitrust agencies challenged mergers at less than half the rate of challenges during the prior four years under the Clinton administration

http://www.mofo.com/news/updates/files/15173.html

2009 is the era of merger mania
The first half of 2009 has already seen four mega merger/acquisitions as patent expiry of blockbuster molecules, regulatory hurdles, generics competition and a low R&D productivity lead to lower stock valuations stock – a situation exacerbated by the current economic climate.

One clear outcome of the rapid consolidation of the pharmaceutical industry would be the augmented bargaining power of big pharma vis-à-vis payors and the government, say the analysts. But further strengthening of the big pharma cartel may not necessarily provide benefits to the patients.

http://www.biovalley.ch/content.cfm?nav=4&content=10&command=details&id=10319

The McCarran-Ferguson Act of 1945 (15 U.S.C.A. § 1011 et seq.) gives states the authority to regulate the "business of insurance" without interference from federal regulation, unless federal law specifically provides otherwise.

http://law.jrank.org/pages/8497/McCarran-Ferguson-Act-1945.html#ixzz0ZaeL3cBm

Read more: McCarran-Ferguson Act of (1945)
http://law.jrank.org/pages/8497/McCarran-Ferguson-Act-1945.html\

Wiki offers some subtle variations in it’s evaluation of the McCarran-Ferguson Act of 1945:

The McCarran–Ferguson Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1011-1015, is a United States federal law that exempts insurance companies from the federal anti-trust legislation that applies to most businesses[1] and allows state law to regulate the business of insurance without federal government interference. The McCarran–Ferguson Act was passed by Congress in 1945 after the Supreme Court ruled in United States v. South-Eastern Underwriters Association that the federal government could regulate insurance companies under the authority of the Commerce Clause in the U.S. Constitution.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McCarran–Ferguson_Act

For those with legal training, this abstract is interesting:

Are Conglomerate Insurance Mergers Sui Generis, by David R. Kamerschen

http://www.jstor.org/pss/252049

And Patrick Leahy is quite clear. Anti-Trust exemption for insurance companies is not helpful and needs to be repealed:

WarOnError

WarOnError

11 Comments