The IRS has reported that it fined 7.5 million Americans who didn’t have health insurance in 2014, yet millions of dollars in Obamacare subsidies are being paid out to people scamming the system!
The Treasury Department reported last week the number of Americans who faced fines because of the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate was significantly higher than the Obama administration expected. For 2014, the IRS projected that roughly 6 million would face fines, but the final total was 1.5 million higher.
…But an investigation by the Government Accountability Office recently revealed that fake applicants who enrolled in health insurance programs through the federal exchange were receiving subsidies. Those phony applicants had initially enrolled during 2014, but they were automatically re-enrolled and continued to benefit from tax subsidies in 2015, the GAO said.
The application process used by the Healthcare.Gov federal exchange is not set up to detect fraud, according to Seto Bagdoyan, chief of GAO audits and investigations, who submitted testimony to the Senate Finance Committee earlier this month.
Democrats downplayed concerns raised in the GAO report, since it only dealt with fictitious people and did not seem to hurt anyone’s access to the insurance exchanges.
It’s the latest black eye for the president’s health care law and for a federal bureaucracy reeling in scandals at agencies including the IRS, the Office of Personnel Management and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
* Considering the importance of this story, you would imagine the media was all over it, right? Not quite. CBS and NBC on Thursday skipped the story completely. ABC’s Good Morning America devoted all of 17 seconds to it.