Report: Census survey changes will prevent analysis of Obamacare effects

Sarah Hurtubise
The Daily Caller

The Census Bureau will make significant changes to its annual survey that it will make it difficult to measure Obamacare’s effects, The New York Times reports.

The Current Population Survey, the questionnaire used during interviews with tens of thousands of households, will undergo a “total revision to health insurance questions” this fall, according to internal Census documents. The changes will make the new findings incomparable to census data from years before the health care law went into effect and will cause a break in continuous data that will cause next year’s Census data to show fewer uninsured Americans post-Obamacare, whether that’s true or not.

Officials say the changes are intended to improve the census survey’s accuracy. Internal Census documents alleged that the timing wasn’t purposely intended to cloud clear analysis of Obamacare’s effects.

“It is coincidental and unfortunate timing” to modify the health insurance interview questions just after the health-care law became law, according to one internal paper. “Ideally, the redesign would have had at least a few years to gather base line and trend data.”…

The changes seem geared toward producing census results that are more favorable to Obamacare. It will make it difficult to determine whether any drop in the uninsured rate has to do with the law or other factors, like changes in the survey methods. Census officials do expect to see fewer people uninsured…


The complete article is at The Daily Caller.



Related:  From February 2009,   GOP Sounds Alarm Over Obama Decision to Move Census to White House

Utah’s congressional delegation is calling President Obama’s decision to move the U.S. census into the White House a purely partisan move and potentially dangerous to congressional redistricting around the country.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, told FOX News on Monday that he finds it hard to believe the Obama administration felt the need to place re-evaluation of the inner workings of the census so high on his to-do list, just three weeks into his presidency.

“This is nothing more than a political land grab,” Chaffetz said.

Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, told the Salt Lake Tribune that the move “shouldn’t happen.” He and Chaffetz are trying to rally Republicans “before its too late.”

“It takes something that is supposedly apolitical like the census, and gives it to a guy who is infamously political,” Bishop said of Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, who would be tasked with overseeing the census at the White House…



Update:  Megan McArdle on Obama’s New Books-Cooking Census Insurance Question: “I ’m speechless. Shocked. Stunned. Horrified. Befuddled. Aghast, appalled, thunderstruck, perplexed, baffled, bewildered and dumbfounded.”

The census is changing the way they ask a question about being insured. The old way, they say, tended to overstate how many people were uninsured. (But note Obama was willing to rely on that overstated figure in making his case for the urgency of destroying the health care system.)

The new way is supposedly “more accurate” — but will result in fewer people saying they’re uninsured.

Coincidentally I’m so f***ing sure, these changes are implemented at the precise damn moment Obama wants to demonstrate a Big Impact of Obamacare.



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