Elections

Campaign Watchdog: Group's health insurance claim rated 'mostly false'

The statement: The federal health care reform law would mean "higher health insurance premiums — $2,100 per family."

Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies, in a television ad against attorney General Jack Conway, the Democratic U.S. Senate nominee in Kentucky

The ruling: Mostly false.

The facts: The conservative advocacy group's advertisement ignores projected lower premiums for many people under the complex health care overhaul and focuses on a projected increase for some, but leaves out important facts about that claim as well.

Under the new law, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office estimated the average premium for a family policy in the non-group market (people who don't get insurance through an employer) would be $2,100 higher in 2016 than it would be under current law.

However, about 57 percent of those people would qualify for government subsidies. The premiums those "subsidized enrollees" would pay would average 56 to 59 percent less than under current law, the CBO said.

For people who get insurance through companies with 50 or fewer employees, the average change in premiums in 2016 would range from an increase of 1 percent to a decrease of 2 percent, relative to current law, the CBO estimated.

And for people at companies with more than 50 employees, the average change in premiums would range from nothing to a 3 percent decrease, according to the estimate. Such employment-based insurance would account for 83 percent of the market in 2016, the CBO said.

Crossroads GPS is reportedly affiliated with longtime Republican insiders, including Karl Rove, a top adviser to former President George W. Bush. The group bought more than $500,000 worth of television time in Kentucky to criticize Conway for supporting the health care bill and targeted Democrats elsewhere as well.

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