“I’ll tell you, you know who one of those millions of Americans is who’s lost their health care because of Obamacare? That would be me,” Cruz told the audience at a campaign stop New Hampshire on Thursday evening. “I don’t have health care right now.”
Last year, the Cruz family signed up for health insurance through Obamacare’s state insurance marketplaces. (Thanks to a Republican-sponsored amendment that was introduced to prove a point about Obamacare, federal lawmakers and their staffers are required to enroll in these Obamacare plans if they want to maintain the government contribution to their insurance.)
Cruz’s family used to be covered through a PPO plan with BlueCross BlueShield of Texas. But for 2016, the insurer decided to eliminate PPO plans and move to offering only HMO plans on the individual marketplace (which is becoming a bigger trend in the insurance industry). The insurance company announced this decision last July.
The July announcement gave people enrolled in BlueCross BlueShield’s plans a full five months to select a new HMO plan if they wanted to maintain coverage into the new year. Ted Cruz’s family apparently just didn’t sign up in time.
At the campaign event on Thursday, Cruz joked that the lapse in coverage hasn’t gone over well with his wife Heidi — whose employer-sponsored health insurance used to cover the family until she left her job last spring to work on his presidential campaign.