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Recent

Blog Post
10/30/2014
By Jamie Court
Four health insurance companies are spending $56 million to defeat California Proposition 45, a ballot measure to be decided Tuesday, which I wrote, that bans excessive insurance rate hikes. The insurance companies have unleashed a torrent of deceptive advertising but have remarkably refused to issue a single comment to the news media on Prop 45, including in today's New York Times. Like the...
Video
10/30/2014
A group of price-gouged policyholders, nurses and consumer advocates descended on the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco on Monday night with a truck load of steer manure to give back to the CEOs feting Kaiser's chief what they have been shoveling to Californians in their advertising against Prop 45.
Video
10/29/2014
Right now, health insurance companies can charge excessive rates and get away with it. Prop 45 changes all that. Backed by consumer advocates, Prop 45 will require health insurance companies to justify their rate hikes before they take effect. Don't be fooled by the health insurance industry's lies: No state or federal agency can now stop excessive rate hikes in California. Vote Yes on...
News Release
10/29/2014
Jamie Court & Carmen Balber
San Francisco, CA—Consumer Watchdog, the California Nurses Association and supporters of Yes on Proposition 45 delivered a truckload of steer manure to health insurance industry executives who gathered at the Fairmont Hotel today to fete former Kaiser CEO George Halvorson. “We’re here to return to the health insurance CEOs who have been hiding behind the deceptive $57 million ad...
Video
10/29/2014
YES on Prop 45: Watch this Doctor SMASH Big Insurance's $55 MILLION propaganda campaign.
Video
10/29/2014
Consumer Watchdog Founder Harvey Rosenfield talks to McIntyre In The Morning about his support for California Proposition 45 which gives the California Insurance Commissioner the authority to approve changes in rates to our now-mandated health insurance.
News Release
10/28/2014
Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA – Consumer Watchdog, Consumer Federation of California, the California Nurses Association and price-gouged policyholders condemned menacing health insurance company mailers against Proposition 45 today as a new Hoover Institution Poll puts Proposition 45 ahead by 12 points, 42% to 30% just seven days before the Election. View the poll: http://www.hoover.org/sites/default/...
News Release
10/28/2014
Liza Tucker
SANTA MONICA—Spanish language newspaper La Opinion endorsed Prop 45 over the weekend joining more than a dozen other newspapers supporting Yes on 45 on behalf of six million individuals and small businesses that health insurance companies are price gouging on premiums. “Proposition 45 seeks to expand the power of the California Insurance Commissioner to accept or reject rate hikes...
Article
10/27/2014
Phil Rogul, Carlsbad
“We’ve paid well over $100,000 in premiums and received almost zero health care services.” Phil Rogul, Carlsbad Over the last 22 years my wife and I have paid an ever-increasing monthly premium for high-deductible health insurance policies. We did so to keep our costs low, but such plans come with almost zero actual health care benefits and our premiums increased almost 300% to...
News Release
10/27/2014
Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA --- Consumer Watchdog Campaign today announced that advertising has begun for Yes on Proposition 45, which would give the elected insurance commissioner power to veto excessive health insurance rates. The David v Goliath campaign has been outspent by insurance companies by more than 25 to 1.   The Yes On Prop 45 advertising exposes the health insurance companies as the...
Blog Post
10/30/2014
By Jamie Court
Four health insurance companies are spending $56 million to defeat California Proposition 45, a ballot measure to be decided Tuesday, which I wrote, that bans excessive insurance rate hikes. The insurance companies have unleashed a torrent of deceptive advertising but have remarkably refused to issue a single comment to the news media on Prop 45, including in today's New York Times. Like the...
Blog Post
11/22/2013
By Jamie Court
An analysis just released by California’s health insurance exchange, Covered California, offers the first real insight into the depth of the Obamacare cancellation crisis. About 450,000 of the 900,000 cancelled California policyholders will see rate hikes, according to the analysis released by Covered California.  That’s 50% of all cancelled Californians who will be paying more...
Blog Post
11/19/2013
Harvey Rosenfield
Regulation of insurance companies, introduced by Proposition 103, could repair a loophole in the Affordable Care Act. "We didn't do a good enough job in terms of how we crafted the law," an apologetic President Obama said this month, shortly after millions of Americans got notices from their health insurance companies that their current policies were going to be canceled because...
Blog Post
6/29/2012
By Jamie Court
The finish line has moved forward, but our cause has become even more crucial. You probably know that the Supreme Court upheld vital consumer protections but also ruled that all Californians will have to buy health insurance. Yesterday was also the deadline for county election officials in California to certify that we had enough valid signatures to put our ballot initiative to force health...
Blog Post
5/31/2012
Judy Dugan
Thursday's reports that some Californians will get rebates on their health insurance premiums are a little bit of good news--but not nearly as good as it could be.   An L.A. Times story reports that California small businesses and their employees who are insured by United Health Group will get rebates averaging $98 on last year's premiums because United Health didn't spend at...
Blog Post
5/24/2012
Judy Dugan
Wow. People really don't like insurance companies or their overpaid CEOs. Our news release Wednesday, and a similar message to our mailing list, cheered the pending departure of Blue Shield CEO Bruce Bodaken. We included a rundown of how he treated his customers in the last few years: A rate increase proposal of up to 86% in a year. A corporate stash of $3.2 billion in excessive reserves...
Blog Post
5/23/2012
Jamie Court
The long time CEO of Blue Shield Bruce Bodaken resigned today after a multi-year battle with us over disclosure of his $4.6 million annual salary and unreasonable premium hikes. During his tenure, Bodaken oversaw a health insurance company that has raised rates by tens of millions of dollars while stockpiling $3.2 billion more in “reserves” than the state requires. Blue Shield is...
Blog Post
5/12/2012
Daniel Palay
Next week we will be turning in the signatures for our ballot petition to force health insurance companies to justify their rates and get permission before instituting their rate hikes. Download, sign and return in the mail by the end of the weekend to be part of the signature turn-in or forever hold your peace. This short video preview of the initiative by our friends in Hollywood explains why...
Blog Post
5/7/2012
Jamie Court
Two years ago, as federal health reform lay on death’s door, CEO Angela Braly, head of Blue Cross’s parent company Wellpoint, spit on beleaguered patients. She sat through poignant Congressional testimony from customers whose lives were being ruined by spiraling premium hikes, then Braly testified that the public outrage was "a triumph of sound bites over substance." The...
Blog Post
5/1/2012
Carmen Balber
One million Californians will be slammed today with health insurance rate hikes as high as 20%. Consumer Watchdog Campaign has a solution. Watch this short, funny movie trailer about an alternative future with no rate hikes, and share it with your friends. Health insurance price hikes recur more often than Groundhog Day -- Spring, Summer, Winter, Fall. Now there’s something Californians...
News Release
10/29/2014
Jamie Court & Carmen Balber
San Francisco, CA—Consumer Watchdog, the California Nurses Association and supporters of Yes on Proposition 45 delivered a truckload of steer manure to health insurance industry executives who gathered at the Fairmont Hotel today to fete former Kaiser CEO George Halvorson. “We’re here to return to the health insurance CEOs who have been hiding behind the deceptive $57 million ad...
News Release
10/28/2014
Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA – Consumer Watchdog, Consumer Federation of California, the California Nurses Association and price-gouged policyholders condemned menacing health insurance company mailers against Proposition 45 today as a new Hoover Institution Poll puts Proposition 45 ahead by 12 points, 42% to 30% just seven days before the Election. View the poll: http://www.hoover.org/sites/default/...
News Release
10/28/2014
Liza Tucker
SANTA MONICA—Spanish language newspaper La Opinion endorsed Prop 45 over the weekend joining more than a dozen other newspapers supporting Yes on 45 on behalf of six million individuals and small businesses that health insurance companies are price gouging on premiums. “Proposition 45 seeks to expand the power of the California Insurance Commissioner to accept or reject rate hikes...
News Release
10/27/2014
Jamie Court
Santa Monica, CA --- Consumer Watchdog Campaign today announced that advertising has begun for Yes on Proposition 45, which would give the elected insurance commissioner power to veto excessive health insurance rates. The David v Goliath campaign has been outspent by insurance companies by more than 25 to 1.   The Yes On Prop 45 advertising exposes the health insurance companies as the...
News Release
10/23/2014
Carmen Balber & Jamie Court
San Diego, CA – Health insurance policyholders joined with bedside nurses from the California Nurses Association and consumer advocates supporting Proposition 45, which prohibits excessive rate increases, to deliver a pickup truck containing a ton of steer manure to Blue Shield’s San Diego offices. The Proposition 45 supporters said they were simply returning some of the same material...
News Release
10/22/2014
Jamie Court & Liza Tucker
Santa Monica, CA— The Department of Insurance today declared Anthem Blue Cross’s 9.8% rate increase on small business “unreasonable,” but has no power to stop the hikes unless Proposition 45 passes. Proposition 45, which gives the elected insurance commissioner the power to reject excessive rates, is being opposed by $55 million from the insurance industry, including $18....
News Release
10/20/2014
Jamie Court & Mark Reback
Santa Monica, CA -- On Saturday, the three big health insurance companies that control California’s health insurance market gave another $12 million to their campaign to defeat Proposition 45, which will give California the authority to stop health insurance rate overcharges.   The total insurance industry spending against Consumer Watchdog’s Prop 45 now tops $55 million, with...
News Release
10/17/2014
Carmen Balber & John M. Simpson
SANTA MONICA, CA – The Fresno Bee has endorsed Proposition 45 saying it will rein in health insurance rates and noting “powerful forces are opposed” to the ballot initiative. “These forces — you know them as Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Kaiser, HealthNet and United Healthcare — don't want voters to approve Prop. 45 on the Nov. 4 ballot because it would force...
News Release
10/16/2014
Liza Tucker
SANTA MONICA, CA – Health Insurer HealthNet has chipped in nearly $5 million to defeat Prop 45 in a sign that the health insurance industry fears rate regulation that a yes vote on the proposition would bring, Consumer Watchdog said today. The insurance pot against Prop 45 now totals $43 million to pay for misleading and deceptive TV ads, radio spots, and “independent” opinion...
News Release
10/14/2014
Jamie Court & Carmen Balber
El Segundo, CA -- Blue Shield policyholders joined with bedside nurses from the California Nurses Association, consumer advocates and other supporters of Proposition 45’s rate relief measure to deliver a pickup truck of steer manure to Blue Shield’s offices. The Proposition 45 supporters said they were simply returning some of the same material that the insurance company, which has...
News Story
10/31/2014
By Caitlin Bronson, INSURANCE BUSINESS AMERICA
It’s certainly one way to get a message across. Angered over what they view as excessive hikes in health insurance rates and the $57 million health insurers have spent to defeat California Proposition 45, members of Consumer Watchdog, the California Nurses Association and supports of Yes on Proposition 45 delivered a truckload of steer manure to health insurance industry executives at the...
News Story
10/31/2014
By Jon Healey, LOS ANGELES TIMES
Would the real Proposition 45 please stand up? One of the main arguments advanced by the commercials aired and the torrent of mailers sent by the No on 45 campaign is that the measure would place healthcare in the hands of a single corruptible politician. "Who do you trust with your health care," a recent mailer asks, "a politician or your doctor? Prop. 45 gives one Sacramento...
News Story
10/30/2014
By Jamie Court, HUFFINGTON POST
Four health insurance companies are spending $56 million to defeat California Proposition 45, a ballot measure to be decided Tuesday, which I wrote, that bans excessive insurance rate hikes. The insurance companies have unleashed a torrent of deceptive advertising but have remarkably refused to issue a single comment to the news media on Prop 45, including in today's New York Times. Like the...
News Story
10/30/2014
By Ian Lovett, THE NEW YORK TIMES
Yes on Proposition 45 supporters rallied this month outside Blue Shield of California in El Segundo. The ballot measure would require health insurance companies to justify rate increases. Photo Credit Monica Almeida/The New York Times LOS ANGELES — A year after the federal Affordable Care Act took effect, California voters are now considering another major change to health care: a ballot...
News Story
10/30/2014
By George Skelton, LOS ANGELES TIMES
Six state propositions are on the ballot and none are sexy. All are snoozers. But each is significant. Some, in fact, are game-changers. Why else would the medical profession and insurance companies be spending well over $100 million to beat back Propositions 45 and 46? Prop. 47 would punish handgun thieves with a figurative slap on the wrist. Prop. 48 would set a precedent by allowing an Indian...
News Story
10/30/2014
By Gene Maddaus, LA WEEKLY
Consumer Watchdog, the non-profit group behind Proposition 45, is firing back at House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi over her opposition to the measure. The proposition would give the state's insurance commissioner the power to reject excessive rate hikes for health insurance. In an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle's editorial board this week, Pelosi warned that the measure...
News Story
10/30/2014
By Ellen Snortland, PASADENA WEEKLY
Bias alert! I am proud to say that for 25 years I’ve been a board member of Consumer Watchdog, the nonprofit formerly known as the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights. You could say I’m a dogged board member. We are famous for the passage of Proposition 103 in 1988, which saved California motorists over $102 billion — yes, billion — in premiums. And what are dogs...
News Story
10/29/2014
By Timm Herdt, VENTURA COUNTY STAR
Of the 1.4 million Californians who purchased health insurance this year through the Covered California purchasing exchange, 94 percent bought their plans from just four insurance carriers. Outside of the purchasing exchange, in the private market for individual and small-business policies, about 80 percent of the market is controlled by the big four. Such is not the kind of market that...
News Story
10/29/2014
By John Carroll, SAN DIEGO TV-6
With the election less than a week away, we've decided to take a look at some of the more controversial issues on the ballot. This time, we're looking at Proposition 45.  The measure would give power over regulating healthcare insurance rates to the state's insurance commissioner. "I've seen my insurance rates go up 50 percent in the last two years," said citizen...
News Story
10/28/2014
By Marc Lifsher, LOS ANGELES TIMES
Proposition 45, a ballot measure that would regulate health insurance rates, is ahead, according to a new Internet poll by the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. The survey of self-reported, registered voters who said they planned to vote in the Nov. 4 election, had Proposition 45 leading with 41.6% of those queried and opposed by 29.9%. Undecideds were 28.5%. The poll was taken between...
Video
10/30/2014
A group of price-gouged policyholders, nurses and consumer advocates descended on the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco on Monday night with a truck load of steer manure to give back to the CEOs feting Kaiser's chief what they have been shoveling to Californians in their advertising against Prop 45.
Video
10/29/2014
Right now, health insurance companies can charge excessive rates and get away with it. Prop 45 changes all that. Backed by consumer advocates, Prop 45 will require health insurance companies to justify their rate hikes before they take effect. Don't be fooled by the health insurance industry's lies: No state or federal agency can now stop excessive rate hikes in California. Vote Yes on...
Video
10/29/2014
YES on Prop 45: Watch this Doctor SMASH Big Insurance's $55 MILLION propaganda campaign.
Video
10/29/2014
Consumer Watchdog Founder Harvey Rosenfield talks to McIntyre In The Morning about his support for California Proposition 45 which gives the California Insurance Commissioner the authority to approve changes in rates to our now-mandated health insurance.
Video
10/26/2014
Health insurance policyholders joined with bedside nurses from the California Nurses Association and consumer advocates supporting Proposition 45, which prohibits excessive rate increases, to deliver a pickup truck containing a ton of steer manure to Blue Shield’s San Diego offices.
Video
10/23/2014
Michael Finney looks at the campaign for Prop 45 and how it is similar to the fight to pass Prop 103 back in the 80's.
Video
10/14/2014
Blue Shield policyholders joined with bedside nurses from the California Nurses Association, consumer advocates and other supporters of Proposition 45’s rate relief measure to deliver a pickup truck of steer manure to Blue Shield’s offices. The Proposition 45 supporters said they were simply returning some of the same material that the insurance company, which has given $9.5 million...
Video
10/14/2014
Blue Shield policyholders joined with bedside nurses from the California Nurses Association, consumer advocates and other supporters of Proposition 45’s rate relief measure to deliver a pickup truck of steer manure to Blue Shield’s offices. The Proposition 45 supporters said they were simply returning some of the same material that the insurance company, which has given $9.5 million...
Video
10/10/2014
Health insurance regulators review rates, and they may even find them unreasonable. But there is no law to force insurance companies to comply with a regulators recommendations. Proposition 45 would change that.
Video
10/9/2014
Consumer advocates and nurses launched a new “Yes on 45” street art campaign hitting San Francisco and Sacramento this week that exposes the health insurance companies spending $37.5 million to oppose Proposition 45. Thousands of posters will be plastered through wild-posting in the coming days in other cities across the state. Michael Finney with KGO TV-7 ABC in San Francisco has the...

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