Sandy Praeger

Ashley Booker / KHI News Service

After taking his new role as Kansas insurance commissioner, Ken Selzer stressed that he will work toward providing Kansas consumers with a more robust insurance market.

Selzer said recruiting insurance companies to move to the state will give consumers more options.

“We are always going to find other ways to help the industry be more vibrant, more aggressive, more productive on behalf of consumers,” Selzer said last week while speaking to the Senate Financial Institutions and Insurance Committee. “The end game is to always take care of the consumers.” 

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Ken Selzer, a conservative Republican who supports repeal of the Affordable Care Act and Kansas’ participation in a multi-state compact designed to allow member states to take control of their Medicare programs, has been elected Kansas insurance commissioner.

Selzer, 61, defeated Dennis Anderson, a Democrat, in the general election Tuesday.

The top-of-the-ticket races may be commanding the most attention in this year’s Kansas election, but significant issues also are in play in some of the down-ballot contests.

Jim McLean / KHI News Service

 

The trend of Kansas Republicans crossing party lines to support Democrats running against GOP conservatives has now reached the insurance commissioner’s race.

Republican incumbent Sandy Praeger, who’s not running for re-election after three terms, endorsed Democrat Dennis Anderson on Tuesday at a campaign event staged at Brewster Place, a Topeka, Kan., retirement community.

Alex Smith / KCUR

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, a Republican, will endorse Democrat Dennis Anderson on Tuesday, according to a news release issued by Anderson’s campaign.

Anderson is seeking to succeed Praeger as the state’s insurance regulator. He’s running against Republican Ken Selzer, who emerged from a crowded field to capture the GOP nomination in the August primary.

The release issued Monday says that Anderson will “announce the newest endorsement of his campaign,” and goes on to say that both he and Praeger will be available to answer questions.

Primer On GOP Candidates For Kansas Insurance Commissioner

Jul 28, 2014
Courtesy photos / art from KCUR

Five candidates are seeking the Republican nomination for Kansas insurance commissioner, an office that regulates insurance companies, examines them for financial solvency, ensures compliance with insurance regulations, licenses insurance agents, and educates and assists consumers. The primary winner on Aug. 5 will face off in the fall against the lone Democrat in the race, Dennis Anderson. The winner in November will succeed Sandy Praeger, who was elected in 2003 and is stepping down.

The head of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and two members met Wednesday with President Obama to discuss the troubled rollout of the Affordable Care Act.

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, a moderate Republican who has generally supported the law, was invited but chose not to attend. NAIC President Jim Donelon, Connecticut’s insurance commissioner, organized the meeting.

Praeger said she wasn’t trying to distance herself from the controversy surrounding the law’s problem-plagued rollout.

KHI News Service

In a little less than two months, Kansans will be able to begin shopping for individual health insurance plans through the new, online marketplace called the exchange. Most of the plans will be sold by three companies.

According to Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, they'll be the same three companies that provide the bulk of health insurance in Kansas now: Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas, Blue Cross of Kansas City, and Coventry.

The Kansas Insurance Department is planning meetings to help educate people about the Affordable Care Act.

Thursday’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding the federal health law has provided more clarity to the region and country. 

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The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act—the massive health care overhaul signed into law by President Obama two years ago.

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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has rejected a request from Kansas to gradually phase in one of the new requirements of the federal health care law.  The decision means consumers who buy individual health insurance policies can expect to see lower premiums, expanded benefits, or even cash rebates.