Sen. Sampson testifies on S.B. 842 (the “Public Option”)

February 9, 2021

As submitted to the Insurance and Real Estate Committee as part of the public record.

Testimony of Senator Rob Sampson
Insurance & Real Estate Committee
February 9, 2021
Senate Bill No. 842: An Act Concerning Health Insurance And Health Care In Connecticut

Co-Chairs Lesser and Wood, Ranking Members Hwang and Pavalock-D’Amato, and esteemed member of the Insurance
& Real Estate Committee,

Thank you for the opportunity to submit my written testimony is opposition to Senate Bill No. 842. Previously, I spent
seven years as the Ranking Republican member of the Insurance committee. During that time, I was proud to be
responsible for leading the fight against the implementation of Obamacare in our state, as well as the countless additional
burdens placed on the insurance industry and their ability to produce quality products that are affordable for consumers.

Sadly, serving in the minority, I was on the losing end in most of those debates.

It is remarkable to me that the very same people who have imposed so much regulation and interference on the Insurance
industry that has resulted in skyrocketing costs for carriers and consumers, and many insurers leaving the Connecticut
marketplace, are the ones using those inevitabilities as justification for a so-called public option. Before the intervention
of so-called progressive policymaking ideas in our healthcare marketplace, free market principles were responsible for
creating the finest healthcare system in the world. This public option alternative would place the state in competition with
private business and will naturally benefit by being able to compete on an un-level playing field. Despite this advantage,
the result would be the same as it is every time socialism is tried – failure. The failure in this case would harm every
citizen in our state, further reducing the quality of healthcare and making access to it more difficult and even more
expensive for some. I ask the committee to table this misguided proposal, and any other policies that move us in this

Instead, we should be working on better ways to deliver healthcare and insurance in our state. We should restore choice
for consumers on the type of plans they can purchase, and also for insurers in the types of products they offer. That along
with responsible changes in tort reform and addressing the cost of healthcare itself would instantly put us back on the right
track towards lower premiums, more access for everyone, and a higher quality of care. It’s about time we took the
government out of the way, except for a responsible Insurance Department to responsibly regulate the industry.

This bill is poorly conceived and won’t make CT a more attractive place to live, work, run a business, or retire. We can
and should be doing better for the constituents we serve.

Thank you to the committee for your consideration of this testimony and please feel free to reach out to my office with
any questions of concerns.


State Senator Rob Sampson