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Thread: Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Obama on Health Care

  1. #16
    Elite Member louiswinthorpe111's Avatar
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    I don't know why they didn't just expand Medicare. Everyone pays $100 per month for catastrophic coverage, which is taken from payroll taxes/benefits. If you choose to get a supplement to cover additional costs, you pay that on your own. Seems simple.

    I do like that it now requires to cover pre existing conditions. That was a bullshit clause.
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  2. #17
    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by witchcurlgirl View Post
    Many more americans will now have insurance. It doesn't mean they'll get health care.

    The health care bill entrenches private health insurance companies. For many people deductibles and co-pays will remain too expensive to actually use their new insurance. And many currently insured people are going to keep having their premiums increased on a regular basis.

    It just pulls more people into a ridiculously expensive health care system that is managed and funded by private, for profit insurers with no countervailing government option.
    Without insurance, access to healthcare is much, much more difficult. With insurance, at least there is some established "reasonable" fee for entrance into the healthcare system, as well as a cap on medical expenses (as opposed to having no insurance).

  3. #18
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    But in a major victory for the states who challenged the law, the court said that the Obama administration cannot coerce states to go along with the Medicaid insurance program for low-income people.

    The financial pressure which the federal government puts on the states in the expansion of Medicaid “is a gun to the head,” Roberts wrote.

    “A State that opts out of the Affordable Care Act’s expansion in health care coverage thus stands to lose not merely ‘a relatively small percentage’ of its existing Medicaid funding, but all of it,” Roberts said.

    Congress cannot “penalize States that choose not to participate in that new program by taking away their existing Medicaid funding,” Roberts said.

    The Medicaid provision is projected to add nearly 30 million more people to the insurance program for low-income Americans -- but the court’s decision left states free to opt out of the expansion if they choose.

    Supreme Court upholds health care law - NBC Politics

    This was the main reason many of the 26 states brought suit, they won on this part. It could have an enormous impact on the poor, as about half the people gaining coverage through the affordable care act are going to get their coverage through medicaid.
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  4. #19
    Elite Member greysfang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JadeStar70 View Post
    So what does this mean to the common guy and his families health care?

    it means he has to buy expensive insurance instead of keeping the lights on, otherwise he's fined a big wad every year. This is fucked up.
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  5. #20
    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Medicaid Expansion Goes Overlooked In Supreme Court Anticipation


    When the Supreme Court announces its long-anticipated decision on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act on Thursday, all eyes will be on the so-called individual mandate. That's the section of the law that requires most Americans to either have health insurance or pay a penalty starting in 2014.

    But there's another important constitutional question before the court that most pundits haven't talked about much — a broad expansion of Medicaid, the joint federal-state program for people with low incomes.

    "Medicaid often doesn't get as much attention as other matters, so it's not shocking," says Alan Weil, executive director of the National Academy for State Health Policy. "But given the stakes for the Medicaid program, I think it warrants a little bit more attention."

    Specifically, the court has been asked whether the part of the law that would expand Medicaid to an estimated 17 million more people over the next 10 years is an unconstitutional infringement of states' rights.

    "About half of the people who are expected to gain coverage under the Affordable Care Act gain it through the Medicaid program," Weil says. "So this is not a small change to Medicaid, and it's also not a small part of the Affordable Care Act."

    The law would expand Medicaid coverage to everyone with incomes under 133 percent of the federal poverty level. In 2012, that's $14,856. In practice, the expansion will mostly cover adults without children or disabilities, since low-income children, parents and those with disabilities are mostly already eligible.

    But unlike the rest of Medicaid, whose costs are mostly shared between the federal government and the states, the federal government picks up the entire cost of the additional coverage for the first several years; eventually states have to pay 10 percent.

    "It's a very favorable formula from a state government perspective," Weil says.

    But that hasn't stopped states from complaining. Twenty-six of them, in fact, are parties to the lawsuit now before the Supreme Court.

    They say the federal government is basically blackmailing them into expanding Medicaid. That's because while the Medicaid program is theoretically voluntary for the states, it's gotten so large, they say, they no longer have a choice about whether to participate.

    "The argument is that the federal government overreached by essentially coercing states into a big expansion of the social safety net," says Douglas Holtz-Eakin, an economist and former director of the Congressional Budget Office who now heads the American Action Forum, a conservative think tank. His group wrote a brief in support of the states.

    "With these Medicaid expansions," Holtz-Eakin says, "states don't have a real choice. If they were to give up their federal funds, they would have to come up with another 22 percent of the average state's budget to cover the existing Medicaid programs. It would be a 34 percent tax increase for the typical state. Those are enormous numbers."

    On the other hand, Holtz-Eakin concedes, there's a long history of the federal government getting to say how money it provides from federal taxpayers should be spent.

    The argument is that the federal government overreached by essentially coercing states into a big expansion of the social safety net.

    - Douglas Holtz-Eakin, former CBO director

    "When we went to a nationwide 55 mph speed limit, the way it was done was to say, 'Do this or you don't get your highway funds,'" he says. "So it's very common for the federal government to use the funding mechanism as a way to get the states to do what they want."

    And if the court did accept the states' arguments about Medicaid, says Weil, it could affect a lot more than just Medicaid.

    "Once you go down the path of saying the federal government is limited in its ability to use its spending power to encourage states to take a particular action, you call into question the structure of dozens and dozens of federal programs where the federal government expects the states to put up a share of the funds," says Weil, "whether it's in transportation or social services or health care or environmental protection.

    "Anywhere where the federal government says we want to share in the costs, if the court accepts this argument of coercion, pretty much everything with that structure would have to be re-examined."

    Most legal scholars, however, consider it unlikely that the court will buy the states' arguments. Holtz-Eakin says his group polled 400 lawyers who either worked as clerks for Supreme Court justices or have argued cases before the court. Before the oral arguments in the case, only 19 percent of them thought it was likely the Medicaid expansion would be found unconstitutional. And after the arguments? "It had gone to 22 percent," he said.


    Medicaid Expansion Goes Overlooked In Supreme Court Anticipation : Shots - Health Blog : NPR
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  6. #21
    Elite Member louiswinthorpe111's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by witchcurlgirl View Post
    Medicaid Expansion Goes Overlooked In Supreme Court Anticipation



    "When we went to a nationwide 55 mph speed limit, the way it was done was to say, 'Do this or you don't get your highway funds,'" he says. "So it's very common for the federal government to use the funding mechanism as a way to get the states to do what they want."

    And if the court did accept the states' arguments about Medicaid, says Weil, it could affect a lot more than just Medicaid.

    "Once you go down the path of saying the federal government is limited in its ability to use its spending power to encourage states to take a particular action, you call into question the structure of dozens and dozens of federal programs where the federal government expects the states to put up a share of the funds," says Weil, "whether it's in transportation or social services or health care or environmental protection.
    Hummm, like No Child Left Behind for example. If you don't follow the mandates of that law, then states get penalized Federal funding. That could now be up for grabs.
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  7. #22
    Elite Member MontanaMama's Avatar
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    I'm not really sure how they found that provision to be unconstitutional (but I'm having a hard time slogging through the decision) - doesn't anyone remember when the federal government forced every state to raise the drinking age to 21 or lose highway funds? Oh, but that was totally constitutional because it was under Reagan.
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  8. #23
    Elite Member HWBL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MohandasKGanja View Post
    Jeffrey Toobin was convinced that this Court would overturn the ACA. Mainly because of how many 5-4 votes their had been on cases before them, and with Roberts always on the conservative side. Wow.

    By the way, as of about 3 minutes ago, FoxNews still doesn't know what's going on and seems to be hinting that it will be overturned. HAHAHAHA! No wonder they get rated the stupidest viewers of all the channels. I bet a month from now, they'll still think it's been overturned.
    This could very well be a tactical vote to get more Repugs out to vote in the November elections. Then that slimebucket Romney as yet another Repug=fail president will overturn it as his first presidential deed.
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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HWBL View Post
    This could very well be a tactical vote to get more Repugs out to vote in the November elections. Then that slimebucket Romney as yet another Repug=fail president will overturn it as his first presidential deed.

    (From Andrew Sullivan's blog): Nate Cohn downplays the electoral consequences of today's decision:
    If the Court had gone a different direction, the electoral consequences could have been more significant. But since the ruling preserves the status quo, the fundamentals of the health care debate remain essentially unaltered. Dissatisfaction with the health care law is already priced into the President’s approval ratings—Obama’s pursuit of health care reform was a defining element of his first term, and voters have already judged him on that basis. Opposition to the health care law was never driven by arcane constitutional concerns, even if many viewed it as government overreach.

  10. #25
    Elite Member CornFlakegrl's Avatar
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    What was the argument that this was Constitutional? Where the hell does it say in the Constitution that the federal government can order citizens to buy something?????

  11. #26
    Elite Member MontanaMama's Avatar
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    Congress has the constitutional authority to regulate interstate commerce and levy taxes for the general welfare of the nation. Since so many people play the odds and don't have health insurance, the rest of us pay for their care through unpaid for usage of emergency rooms (which must treat people). For some reason, that is also the rationale for insurance to be so expensive, except that argument doesn't wash with me because insurance companies are private entities and negotiate the reimbursement schedule. But anyhoo...government requires you to buy all sorts of things. Auto insurance, for one. Yes, you can avoid that required purchase by not having a vehicle, but everyone will need healthcare at some point in their lives - why should the rest of society pay for that care because someone decided to play the odds?
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  12. #27
    Elite Member CornFlakegrl's Avatar
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    Thanks Montana. I knew the commerce clause was being thrown around, but I coudn't figure out how.


    Anyway, regulating interstate commerce and requiring citizens to purchase a product seems a mighty leap to me.
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  13. #28
    Elite Member MontanaMama's Avatar
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    Well, to be fair, the Supreme Court did say that they could not enforce the mandate under the commerce clause, but that the penalty for failure to obtain health insurance was within the taxing authority - as the penalty was, in fact, a tax. The conservatives are having a fit over that because the administration went to great lengths to term it a non-tax penalty (thinking there was authority within the commerce clause).

    To let you know how far the commerce clause authority has stretched - the reach under the federal govt under the commerce clause extended to a woman's backyard where she was growing pot for purely personal use. Never intended (and there was no evidence) to sell a single bud, but yet, they could confiscate the plants under the commerce clause. That leap of logic is more than my little brain can take.
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  14. #29
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Enjoy your corporate welfare insurance slavery.
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    Elite Member MontanaMama's Avatar
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    Which is different from what we've had how? At least more people have access.
    If i hear one more personal attack, i will type while drunk, then you can cry! - Bugdoll
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    Quote Originally Posted by shedevilang View Post
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