Where in the World is TN’s Insurance Commissioner?

While Tennessee consumers face the highest health insurance rate increases in the country, the Insurance Commissioner who approved those increases is taking industry-funded trips to Bermuda and Puerto Rico.

That’s just not right.

Newschannel5 reports:

Critics say Tennessee’s insurance commissioner spends way too much time away from her office, working with other state regulators and insurance industry representatives.

Andy Spears, the executive director of the consumer advocacy group Tennessee Citizen Action, said, “I think Tennesseans have a right to be concerned.”

Our investigation has found that since taking the state commissioner’s job in 2011, McPeak has traveled across the country and around the world attending more than 120 conferences and meetings on insurance issues.

Our Insurance Commissioner should be the top advocate for Tennessee families when it comes to insurance – instead, she’s been out of the office nearly 120 days out of the year over the past two years.

So, what benefit do Tennesseans get from all this travel:

“She’s doing what the insurance industry wants and not what Tennesseans want,” Andy Spears of Tennessee Citizen Action said, adding that he questions who McPeak is really working for.

He added, “The track record seems to be pretty clear. When you have the president-elect of the NAIC approving the largest rate increase in the country for health insurance, it seems like the industry is getting exactly what they want from Julie McPeak.”

While Governor Haslam defends McPeak, Tennessee Citizen Action believes citizens deserve better:

Andy Spears, with the advocacy group Tennessee Citizen Action declared, “If I were the governor, I would be asking, ‘where’s my insurance commissioner?'”

Spears continued, “The industry got exactly what they wanted with a very high rate increase in health insurance in Tennessee while she’s taking money in the form of trips from the insurance industry. And that seems to me to be a huge conflict of interest. Her number one job should be to defend Tennesseans and to protect Tennesseans. And instead she’s protecting and defending the insurance industry.”

For more on holding government accountable, follow @TNCitizenAction



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