I noticed in last the Republican Debates that the Health Care discussion included the oft-repeated proposal that "Allowing people to buy insurance across state lines" constituted some sort of Health Care Reform. Either I'm missing something, or the people supporting this idea are.
Currently the reason that available insurance and premiums varies state-to-state is that the insurance industry is regulated at the state level. Each state has its own laws, regulations and standards, and the offerings and rates that insurance companies offer varies because the market in each state is different. So allowing people in State A to buy insurance offered in State B is actually forcing the insurance companies to offer the same policies/premiums in all states even though the markets are different, which doesn't really sound like a Small Government Free Market solution.
So ... if that situation stays the same, but laws are passed that "allow" people to buy insurance "across state lines," then the insurance companies are not going to offer the better/cheaper coverage available in State A to buyers in State B when State B's regulatory environment is the reason that they don't already offer the same deal there. Rather than people in State B getting the better policy from State A, the companies are just going to equalize the offerings in both states ... probably by only offering the "worse" policies/premiums in BOTH states. And that would effectively strip the state's of the power to regulate the insurance companies at the state level and probably necessitate that regulation be bumped up to the Federal level ... which again doesn't exactly sound like the sort of thing conservatives SAY they want to do.
So ... what am I missing?