Can ObamaCare survive success?

posted at 1:01 pm on June 30, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

The Supreme Court gave ObamaCare a new lease on political life by upholding the entirety of the law — well, almost the entirety of the law.  The decision by Chief Justice John Roberts threw out a portion of the bill in a dispute that didn’t get a lot of attention during the two-year legal fight, one that removes the penalties for states that don’t take part in the Medicaid expansion. Shortly after the decision was announced, at least three Republican governors announced that they would not expand Medicaid as dictated by the ACA.  Bobby Jindal of Louisiana declared in a conference call with the media that his state would not enact either the exchanges or the Medicaid expansion, which would force his state to absorb much larger costs.  Jindal wasn’t alone for long:

Gov. Scott Walker pledged again Thursday not to phase in any parts of President Barack Obama’s signature health care reform law ahead of November’s elections even though the U.S. Supreme Court ruled it is constitutional.

Walker, a Republican, has said he holds out hope the GOP will recapture the White House and gain full control of Congress and repeal the legislation. He reiterated his stance Thursday minutes after the court released its ruling.

“While the court said it was legal, that doesn’t make it right,” Walker said at a news conference. “For us to put time and effort and resources into that doesn’t make a lot of sense.”

In Kansas, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius’ successor Governor Sam Brownback concurred:

A day after the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Obama administration’s Affordable Care Act, Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback said he had no plans to implement provisions of the health care law.

“This is now in the hands of the American public. Mitt Romney has said on Day One he’ll grant a global waiver from the implementation of Obamacare, so now it’s up to the American public to decide, and I’m going to see what’s going to happen in the fall election before we move forward,” he said on CNBC’s “The Kudlow Report.”

Chuck Blahous warns that the court’s change of the Medicaid-expansion provision makes ObamaCare much less sustainable and practically guarantees its failure:

The Supreme Court left intact most of the health care law’s provisions, excepting only one section that would have allowed the Secretary of HHS to withdraw “existing Medicaid funding” from states that fail to comply with the law’s expansion of Medicaid eligibility.

This is important. At first glance, it appears quite possible that this decision could:

  1. Considerably worsen the budgetary effects of the law, and;
  2. Result in substantial cuts, later in this decade, to the subsidies for low-income individuals who are compelled to buy health insurance under the law.

Blahous, a former economic adviser to George W. Bush and deputy director of the National Economic Council, argues that the states have very compelling reasons to stay as far away from the Medicaid expansion as possible.  The federal government covers the costs for the first few years, but after that it becomes a huge unfunded mandate.  If states refuse to participate — and remember, 26 states sued to block implementation of the law — the federal government will have to expand the subsidy program to help lower-income families in the 100-400%-of-poverty-line group buy health insurance.  And that means that ObamaCare costs will explode:

How much worse? No one (perhaps outside of CBO) can say. But under past estimates, a 1 million-person reduction in the law’s reliance on Medicaid has meant an increase in net costs of about $50-$90 billion over ten years. With 26 states joined in a lawsuit to be released from this forced coverage expansion, the fiscal worsening could be substantial.

The side effects of the court ruling don’t end there. The health law also contains a “fail safe” provision requiring that total costs of the health exchange credits be limited to 0.504% of GDP per year after 2018. In previous estimates, CBO projected that subsidy percentages would “eventually” be cut by this provision to keep their total costs beneath this cap. But if health exchange participation is to be significantly higher than previously projected, then costs will be also much higher. This would force significant cuts in subsidies to low-income individuals starting in 2019; the text of the law is explicit that the cap will be enforced by reducing these subsidies. Lawmakers would thus have to choose between allowing these cuts to low-income individuals to go into effect, and waiving the existing fiscal constraints of the health care law.

So much for the promise of cost control, which was always a shell game, with the states playing the role of sucker.  ObamaCare backers could only claim cost control by shifting the costs for the Medicaid expansion to the states, while taking credit for more-or-less universal coverage.  That would mean either higher state taxes, reductions of other state services, or both.  By freeing the states from having to bear those costs, the bill will come due at the federal level instead, and Blahous thinks that will start sinking into the national consciousness soon:

The Supreme Court may have just set in motion of chain of events that could lead to the law’s being found as busting the budget, even under the highly favorable scoring methods used last time around.

I’m not sure that really does us any favors, but at least the reversal on the Medicaid expansion exposes the dishonesty of the “deficit-neutral” argument.

Update: I wrote 200-400% of poverty line, but I meant 100-400%.  I’ve corrected it above.


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Pressure your State Governors and Legislatures. I’ve been saying this since Thursday.

txmomof6 on June 30, 2012 at 1:04 PM

Also Ed, since the mandate is now a tax, does this make the Catholic Church’s fight any easier? And I still haven’t had much luck in determining if the waivers, which are now “tax exemptions” are even legal.

Weight of Glory on June 30, 2012 at 1:06 PM

… and my governor, the one that the Court and Obama just peed all over in the SB1070 case is moving full steam ahead for implementation.

Yes, the Republican party in Arizona is stupid. It’s less stupid than the democrats, but that is small comfort.

AZfederalist on June 30, 2012 at 1:06 PM

Now THIS does my heart good! Get 20-25 states to say No Thanks…Holder sues the states…good Lord…Party TIME!!!

winston on June 30, 2012 at 1:07 PM

None of this will affect me because Obama said that if I don”t want to change my medical coverage, I won’t have to. And I will get to keep my doctor too!!!!! Right???

dirtseller on June 30, 2012 at 1:07 PM

ObamaCare = forced medicaid for the “poor” = estate tax of up to 90%, depending on the state, for all medicaid patients already exists.
Mandatory!
Ed Morrissey has written on this problem in the past.

DarrelsJoy on June 30, 2012 at 1:08 PM

Don’t worry after the GOP fails to repeal and loses in 2014 or 2016 the Dems will get back in power and tweak the law taxing things we refuse to do to pay or it.

bgibbs1000 on June 30, 2012 at 1:08 PM

Some other questions:

Since churches are exempt from federal income tax, does that mean that churches can just ignore ObamaTax now?

Are the waivers from ObamaTax that Sebellius has been handing out by the thousands to Obama’s union and corporate cronies even legal, now that this mandate fine/penalty is officially a tax?

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:08 PM

Holder sues the states…good Lord…Party TIME!!!

winston on June 30, 2012 at 1:07 PM

Holder can sue all he wants, the Supremes said the states can say no way Jose.

txmomof6 on June 30, 2012 at 1:09 PM

Chuck Blahous warns that the court’s change of the Medicaid-expansion provision makes ObamaCare much less sustainable and practically guarantees its failure:

Really…..

I see patterns.
Cash for clunkers
Solyndra
LightSquared
The Venerable Chevy Volt

need I continue?

ted c on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM

Roberts’ Rules: A Look At The Precedents Set

http://predicthistunpredictpast.blogspot.com/2012/06/roberts-rules-look-at-precedents-set.html

M2RB: Motörhead

In so many ways, Obama is irrelevant. He is just a haemorrhoid on the ass that is Progressivism.

Resist We Much on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM

You forgot to mention another problem. The mandate. In Robert’s opinion he says that it will become a penalty if a tax is so high that you don’t have another option. This essentially means they can’t raise the penalty or it could be found to be forcing people to buy insurance. A few years of this and the insurance companies will go bankrupt and the state exchanges will force cost on to the government. That cost cannot be put on the state or they could sue out of the law. The federal government would need to cover it, but it can’t, so at some point there will be another showdown between the two sides.

The healthcare law as it is will not survive no matter who is in Congress or the White House.

ArkyDore on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM

If this is as you say and PPACA is now a budget disaster, shouldn’t it be easier to repeal via reconciliation? Not just the mandate but the whole thing? Especially now that the “cheater years” have expired.

xuyee on June 30, 2012 at 1:14 PM

The largest tax increase in history.

Bmore on June 30, 2012 at 1:14 PM

The federal government covers the costs for the first few years, but after that it becomes an unfunded mandate sloppy crap sandwich.

ted c on June 30, 2012 at 1:14 PM

Yeah, Dear Leader has shown how careful he is about following the law…he will never recognize the mandate as a tax…who enforces the law against a lawless administration?

d1carter on June 30, 2012 at 1:14 PM

Weight of Glory on June 30, 2012 at 1:06 PM
The Catholic Church already has a really good 1st Amendment argument. Tax laws are subject to the Bill of Rights. Liberty University already brought this suit because of the abortion issue. The 4th Circuit said it wasn’t ripe, but did not consider it on the merits, so it was not considered in the case that the Supreme Court just decided. The argument is still out there.

txmomof6 on June 30, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Don’t worry after the GOP fails to repeal and loses in 2014 or 2016 the Dems will get back in power and tweak the law taxing things we refuse to do to pay or it.

bgibbs1000 on June 30, 2012 at 1:08 PM

I don’t see the house reverting now matter what happens in the Senate or the White House. Incumbency is a powerful campaign tool.

ArkyDore on June 30, 2012 at 1:16 PM

If this is as you say and PPACA is now a budget disaster, shouldn’t it be easier to repeal via reconciliation? Not just the mandate but the whole thing? Especially now that the “cheater years” have expired.

xuyee on June 30, 2012 at 1:14 PM

Yes. And the CBO is about to score it again and it could be totally busted. Which will be great timing on the Debt Ceiling Debate coming before the election.

txmomof6 on June 30, 2012 at 1:19 PM

Don’t you get health care from your employer as part of your pay package? Is it now a substantial part?

When the people you work for dump you onto govcare isn’t that the most sincere of pay cuts?

Not only is your salary taking a big cut, you get to pay for your own mediocre health package and other peoples who won’t work and for still others Cadillac plans for the connected, and, you get to do so, in so many new and exciting ways.

Speakup on June 30, 2012 at 1:19 PM

Some other questions:

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:08 PM

I’ve been asking the same question regarding the HHS mandate on charitable organizations. It seems that this would render that mandate invalid since there is not enforcement mechanism without a congressional action revoking tax exemption for this one thing.

Or maybe all that has to happen is for Pharaoh Obama to issue and executive order.

AZfederalist on June 30, 2012 at 1:19 PM

txmomof6 on June 30, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Thanks for the info.

Weight of Glory on June 30, 2012 at 1:19 PM

If this is as you say and PPACA is now a budget disaster, shouldn’t it be easier to repeal via reconciliation? Not just the mandate but the whole thing? Especially now that the “cheater years” have expired.

xuyee on June 30, 2012 at 1:14 PM

Bachmann was on Fox news yesterday and said that they’re going to use reconciliation to repeal. They only need 50 because Romney’s VP gives them 51. You live by reconciliation, you die by it. As Paul Ryan said, this thing needs to be removed root and branch.

TxAnn56 on June 30, 2012 at 1:20 PM

You forgot to mention another problem. The mandate. In Robert’s opinion he says that it will become a penalty if a tax is so high that you don’t have another option. This essentially means they can’t raise the penalty or it could be found to be forcing people to buy insurance. A few years of this and the insurance companies will go bankrupt and the state exchanges will force cost on to the government. That cost cannot be put on the state or they could sue out of the law. The federal government would need to cover it, but it can’t, so at some point there will be another showdown between the two sides.

The healthcare law as it is will not survive no matter who is in Congress or the White House.

ArkyDore on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban

If as you say this is in the 5-4 decision then yes maybe, that’s a big maybe, this could, could, be a brilliant move on Roberts part. But I have not heard about this part of the ruling anywhere else, nor have I read it in the ruling, so it remains to be seen how this would play out.

bgibbs1000 on June 30, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Chuck Blahous warns that the court’s change of the Medicaid-expansion provision makes ObamaCare much less sustainable and practically guarantees its failure

Yeah, like that’s going to stop Obama and the libs.

Thanks 52%. Keep voting Democrat.

/

GrannyDee on June 30, 2012 at 1:21 PM

None of this will affect me because Obama said that if I don”t want to change my medical coverage, I won’t have to. And I will get to keep my doctor too!!!!! Right???

dirtseller on June 30, 2012 at 1:07 PM

You will have to change your coverage, unless your current coverage is exactly the same as the government-mandated coverage required by ObamaTax (i.e., your coverage must provide “free” contraceptives, abortion pills, etc., as well as “free” yearly mammograms and “free” colonoscopies; can have no lifetime limits on pay-outs by the insurer; no exclusion of pre-existing conditions, etc., etc.).

You may have to change your coverage because your premiums are likely to go up substantially under ObamaTax, and you may no longer be able to afford your current coverage.

You will have to change your coverage if your coverage is provided through your employer and your employer decides to dump it and pay the cheaper “tax” instead.

You can keep your doctor, but only if your doctor accepts your plan (which you may no longer be able to keep), and only if your doctor decides to continue practicing medicine, which he/she may no longer want to do now that ObamaTax will be dictating his/her decisions about treatment.

But other than that, Obama was totally telling the truth when he made those promises. ;)

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:21 PM

Ed what about the waivers that Obama has issued to unions and corporations who have bribed supported him? Do those still stand under the designation of taxes?

Cindy Munford on June 30, 2012 at 1:22 PM

Chris Christie has also said he will not sign a bill creating an exchange in New Jersey.

rockmom on June 30, 2012 at 1:22 PM

“While the court said it was legal, that doesn’t make it right,” Walker said at a news conference. “For us to put time and effort and resources into that doesn’t make a lot of sense.”

LOL Walker quoting from Obama’s play book. I like it.

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:23 PM

Bachmann was on Fox news yesterday and said that they’re going to use reconciliation to repeal. They only need 50 because Romney’s VP gives them 51. You live by reconciliation, you die by it. As Paul Ryan said, this thing needs to be removed root and branch.

TxAnn56 on June 30, 2012 at 1:20 PM

That’s all well and good, but won’t Harry Reid just hide it in his desk and refuse to bring it to the floor like he always does?

JPeterman on June 30, 2012 at 1:24 PM

The insurance exchanges aren’t going to be created and people and businesses will pay their “tax” and tell Obama to stuff it. The entire idiotic Obamacare scheme will collapse of its own weight as it should because it does nothing to solve our problems.

eyedoc on June 30, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Ed what about the waivers that Obama has issued to unions and corporations who have bribed supported him? Do those still stand under the designation of taxes?

Cindy Munford on June 30, 2012 at 1:22 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban

Great point!

Do those who are privileged enough to hold those waivers now have to comply in retro? If so, what is the cost?

/Oh, wait. Most Unions are public sector. That means taxpayers have to pay. Again. Bummer.

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:25 PM

TxAnn56 on June 30, 2012 at 1:20 PM
We have to win the White House and we have to win the Senate seats of those who voted for ObamaCare.
McCaskill, Tester, Manchin, Nelson, Brown (Ohio), Casey, Menendez, Webb’s seat, etc.

txmomof6 on June 30, 2012 at 1:25 PM

JPeterman on June 30, 2012 at 1:24 PM

No kidding. Not only do we need 51 votes in the Senate, we also need a president who won’t veto it after we get the 51 Senate votes.

November elections now more important than ever.

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:26 PM

The insurance exchanges aren’t going to be created and people and businesses will pay their “tax” and tell Obama to stuff it. The entire idiotic Obamacare scheme will collapse of its own weight as it should because it does nothing to solve our problems.

eyedoc on June 30, 2012 at 1:25 PM

My thoughts as well. ;)

sicoit on June 30, 2012 at 1:27 PM

None of this will affect me because Obama said that if I don”t want to change my medical coverage, I won’t have to. And I will get to keep my doctor too!!!!! Right???
dirtseller on June 30, 2012 at 1:07 PM

You are correct. Nice to see some right wing ideologues starting to read what’s in the bill.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:27 PM

J.E. Dyer has some thoughts on the waiver issue, now that ObamaTax is only legal as a tax. Here’s what she says:

Weight of Glory — it’s hard to think of a precedent for the points you bring up. I think the states definitely have grounds to sue over unequal treatment, regardless of how the mandate is defined.

The relationship between the federal government and states is somewhat different from the relationship between the federal government and the individual citizen, however. A waiver for the state of Maine isn’t the same thing as a waiver for individuals — and in terms of treating the mandate as a “tax,” that matters. The states, as states, are not taxed by the federal government, so there’s no analogous set of principles for that issue.

A closer analogy to the individual would be waivers for unions and companies, which are private organizations. That is probably the highest-payoff method of bringing suit for unequal treatment under the law. It would have to be a class-action suit, brought by companies (or unions, if there are any) that have not been given waivers. I don’t know if such a suit has been brought, but it seems pretty obvious as a tactic.

We’re in uncharted territory here, as SCOTUS has just declared that something that acts nothing like a “tax” is, in fact, a tax. Treating it like a tax opens up all kinds of questions, but my gut tells me it will be handled, in all pragmatic elements of enforcement, like a mandate.

J.E. Dyer on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM

Weight of Glory on June 30, 2012 at 1:28 PM

We have to remember, they don’t want Obamacare to work, they expect it to fail so the next solution proffered is national healthcare. This is a feature, not a bug. They said it all along that this is just a stop on the road to socialized medicine.

jnelchef on June 30, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Since Obamacare is a Tax, and since I’m a taxpayer, and since Public Sector Unions are paid by ME… Do I get to pay for their health care and also pay a tax penalty for non compliance if they get waivers from Obama?

Treble taxation.

I’m loving it.

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:29 PM

It wouldn’t hurt to flip some more Governors and State legislatures to the R side either. If we want to consider Amending the Constitution to prohibit Congress from taxing inactivity.

txmomof6 on June 30, 2012 at 1:30 PM

Are the waivers from ObamaTax that Sebellius has been handing out by the thousands to Obama’s union and corporate cronies even legal, now that this mandate fine/penalty is officially a tax?

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:08 PM

I see an improper delegation and equal protections problems. The HHS secretary cannot waive taxes for people; I doubt Turbo Timmy can do that. And waiving taxes for some people, but not others – EP problem.

A couple of sttes that applied for waivers and were denied should file a new lawsuit, saying NV, and NH waivers were constitutionally improper. Everybody is in, including the unions with waivers.

Wethal on June 30, 2012 at 1:31 PM

At its core Obamacare is the expansion of Medicaid at the expense of Medicare. What Roberts did was to throw a monkey wrench in the works by vastly upping the cost. Without the penalty forcing states to expand Medicaid, costs will rise because there will be no exchanges ie competition. trying to pay for expanded coverage without expanded Medicaid leads to higher taxes and rationing. The tax cannot be more than the cost of the insurance, however, as Roberts stated. Then it becomes a penalty and it’s unconstitutional. Rationing of course will fall on seniors as Medicare is cut to make up the shortfall.

I wonder if the geezers will wake up before Obama pulls the plug on them? Literally, as Biden would say.

str8tface on June 30, 2012 at 1:33 PM

None of this will affect me because Obama said that if I don”t want to change my medical coverage, I won’t have to. And I will get to keep my doctor too!!!!! Right???
dirtseller on June 30, 2012 at 1:07 PM
You are correct. Nice to see some right wing ideologues starting to read what’s in the bill.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:27 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban

I love it. I love this tax. Now, I don’t have healthcare because I can’t afford it mind you, BUT I am relieved by the fact that not only do I NOT have health insurance, but now I get to pay $2100 next year for not having it.

This is just totally awesome! I am so happy.

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:33 PM

November elections now more important than ever.
AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:26 PM

November elections are always more important than ever when your party is out of power isn’t? Lol

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:33 PM

A few years of this and the insurance companies will go bankrupt and the state exchanges will force cost on to the government. ArkyDore on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM

There is another problem with the insurance ocmpanies. Under a Rehnquist era, unanimous decision, Duquesne Light & Power, you cannot regulate a company into bankruptcy.

It is entitled to a reasonable profit. Anything further is an unconstitutional taking of property.

Wethal on June 30, 2012 at 1:36 PM

Hmmmm…so if the mandate is now a tax, and taxation is subject to the Bill of Rights; if I refused to buy insurance under the auspices of it being against my belief system or something (1st amendment rights), would they be able to asses the tax penalty?
Has the court ruling just granted every individual a waiver if they chose to leverage it?

donkichi on June 30, 2012 at 1:36 PM

Oh, look a new promotional video for Seniors and the disabled about ObamaCare.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yOV8mBjHHYg

Looks a little creepy, but lots of nice people to help.

PappyD61 on June 30, 2012 at 1:36 PM

my gut tells me it will be handled, in all pragmatic elements of enforcement, like a mandate.

J.E. Dyer on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM

LOL. How convenient. It’s a tax when they want it to be a tax, but it’s not a tax when they need it not to be a tax. Just like Roberts’ opinion, in which the mandate could be upheld as a tax, but then magically morphed into not being a tax for purposes of avoiding application of the Anti-Injunction Act.

It’s the magic ObamaTax! Now you see it, now you don’t. (But you still have to pay it, regardless).

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:36 PM

New Medicaid plan for States that don’t participate:

Bus ticket to a nearby state that does. Relatively inexpensive fix.

ProfShadow on June 30, 2012 at 1:37 PM

If this is as you say and PPACA is now a budget disaster, shouldn’t it be easier to repeal via reconciliation? Not just the mandate but the whole thing? Especially now that the “cheater years” have expired.

xuyee on June 30, 2012 at 1:14 PM

It is now a tax law, and Senate rules do allow filibusters on revenue or budget bills.

Adjoran on June 30, 2012 at 1:38 PM

You are correct. Nice to see some right wing ideologues starting to read what’s in the bill.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:27 PM

And Aunt Nancy did say we needed to pass the bill so we would know what’s in it. I wonder if Aunt Nancy has read the bill yet? No bother, it’s constitutional so at least we can all now hold hands and blindly walk together towards a more beautiful and socialist tomorrow.

I feel like having a ham sandwich for lunch. I wonder who in government I need to talk to about that?

dirtseller on June 30, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:27 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban
I love it. I love this tax. Now, I don’t have healthcare because I can’t afford it mind you, BUT I am relieved by the fact that not only do I NOT have health insurance, but now I get to pay $2100 next year for not having it.

This is just totally awesome! I am so happy.

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:33 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban

And not only that, Uppereastside, I STILL get to pay for the welfare queens that take ambulances to the emergency rooms for emergent care for things like toothaches and cramps.

It’s a double plus good thing to be me. I loves me some president obama health care, oh yes I do!

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:40 PM

LOL Walker quoting from Obama’s play book. I like it.
Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:23 PM

I’d like to hear Romney start saying that there are many reasons for repeal but above all else “it’s the right thing to do”.

The Count on June 30, 2012 at 1:41 PM

From the headlines, sorry I am lazy.

J.E. Dyer on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM

Than what was the sense of the designation? It sure would appear that Justice Roberts had a lot of pretzel like logic for no reason, no change but a multitude of articles saying how brilliant he is. Something I am less and less convinced of.

Cindy Munford on June 30, 2012 at 1:34 PM

Cindy Munford on June 30, 2012 at 1:41 PM

There is another problem with the insurance ocmpanies. Under a Rehnquist era, unanimous decision, Duquesne Light & Power, you cannot regulate a company into bankruptcy.

It is entitled to a reasonable profit. Anything further is an unconstitutional taking of property.

Wethal on June 30, 2012 at 1:36 PM

That cunning Roberts.

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:42 PM

Some other questions:

Since churches are exempt from federal income tax, does that mean that churches can just ignore ObamaTax now?

Are the waivers from ObamaTax that Sebellius has been handing out by the thousands to Obama’s union and corporate cronies even legal, now that this mandate fine/penalty is officially a tax?

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:08 PM

This might explain why the four conservative judges dissented without really attacking Roberts’ reasoning on the tax plan. It leaves them an opening in the near future to concur with he idea if the Catholic Church and other churches opposed to ObamaCare, or states which did not receive mandate exemptions from Sellibus, sue to either ignore the law or eliminate the waivers, based on Roberts’ opinion that it’s a tax and not a mandate.

jon1979 on June 30, 2012 at 1:43 PM

I feel like having a ham sandwich for lunch. I wonder who in government I need to talk to about that?

dirtseller on June 30, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Sorry, but the new Federal Bureau of Food Intake Regulation has determined that ham is too fatty and salty for consumption by Americans insured under ObamaTax, and therefore your request is denied. But have a nice day.

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:43 PM

It’s a double plus good thing to be me. I loves me some president obama health care, oh yes I do!
Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:40 PM

You should. He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

November elections are always more important than ever when your party is out of power isn’t? Lol

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:33 PM

Wasn’t aware your Democrats controlled the U.S. House of Representatives.

When did that happen?

Del Dolemonte on June 30, 2012 at 1:47 PM

You should. He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Like giving us the biggest tax increase in the history of the world?

LOL. Thanks so much, Dear Leader!

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:47 PM

I feel like having a ham sandwich for lunch. I wonder who in government I need to talk to about that?

dirtseller on June 30, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Sorry, but the new Federal Bureau of Food Intake Regulation has determined that ham is too fatty and salty for consumption by Americans insured under ObamaTax, and therefore your request is denied. But have a nice day.

AZCoyote on June 30, 2012 at 1:43 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban

Meanwhile, Spanky weighs in

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:47 PM

At its core Obamacare is the expansion of Medicaid at the expense of Medicare. What Roberts did was to throw a monkey wrench in the works by vastly upping the cost. Without the penalty forcing states to expand Medicaid, costs will rise because there will be no exchanges ie competition. trying to pay for expanded coverage without expanded Medicaid leads to higher taxes and rationing. The tax cannot be more than the cost of the insurance, however, as Roberts stated. Then it becomes a penalty and it’s unconstitutional. Rationing of course will fall on seniors as Medicare is cut to make up the shortfall.

I wonder if the geezers will wake up before Obama pulls the plug on them? Literally, as Biden would say.

str8tface on June 30, 2012 at 1:33 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban

Again I ask show us the part of the ruling where this is written and becomes part of the 5-4 decision? Even if true that means Roberts wrote a specific tax law.

bgibbs1000 on June 30, 2012 at 1:47 PM

It will survive unless Republicans offer a better, or at least viable, alternative. We currently don’t offer such an alternative. Keeping the options while abandoning the framework to pay for them… the current campaign message, simply won’t cut it with an issue as large as health care.

Conservatives need to offer something serious on health care. Merely fending off change while American health care costs render our economy uncompetitive with our peers abdicates responsibility and hands the initiative to the wrong policy makers. It erases gains made in productivity and personal income. There is an opening now to offer a plan which controls costs while encouraging the expanding the number of Americans receiving good health care.

lexhamfox on June 30, 2012 at 1:48 PM

You should. He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Are you kidding me? Since 2009 I lost 9 employees and stayed in business by the seat of my pants until March 2012, at which time I was forced to take a job that pays what I made 13 years ago.

Shove it up your ass, okay?

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:49 PM

Holman Jenkins, WSJ: The last thing we needed, in a country staggering under deficits and debt, a sluggish economy and an unaffordable entitlement structure, was a new Rube Goldberg entitlement…
The solution … … What would follow is a boom in low-cost, high-deductible plans that leave individuals in charge of managing most of their ordinary health-care costs out of pocket…
With consumers shouldering a bigger share of health expenses directly, hospital and doctors would discover the advantages of competing on price and quality.

YES, unleash price competition in medical care.
Right now, as of today, the “price” of any medical service is a bad word, rarely discussed. Those that assert that price competition doesn’t work in medical markets are wrong. It’s amazing how innovation would enable price competition in even emergency care situations (it’s not like you would shop around at the time of an emergency, but brokers and agents and yourself would have made certain pre-arrangements to set you up for cost savings in emergency situations!).
When you are spending a fair amount of your own money, you really have an incentive to save and get quality! When you are a seller / provider, you really have an incentive to go out of your way to make it clear and easy for buyers to select your service as the less expensive and higher quality alternative. (Plus, the internet will help here with market efficiency!)
Market competition will dramatically cut costs, and raise quality. The last thing we need is a govt takeover! Talk about insane.

anotherJoe on June 30, 2012 at 1:49 PM

In so many ways, Obama is irrelevant. He is just a haemorrhoid on the ass that is Progressivism.

Resist We Much on June 30, 2012 at 1:13 PM

LOL, funny and true.

Night Owl on June 30, 2012 at 1:50 PM

Someone mentioned the other day that Soros plants probably get paid by the number of responses they receive. Food for thought.

Kataklysmic on June 30, 2012 at 1:50 PM

Apparently Florida has joined the “no thanks” group:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KK9qkceCOUQ

clippermiami on June 30, 2012 at 1:51 PM

It’s a double plus good thing to be me. I loves me some president obama health care, oh yes I do!

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:40 PM

You should. He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Name them. A lot of them.

Are you referring to his trying to outlaw family farms, or are you babbling about his flagrantly breaking established bankruptcy laws by illegally treating secured creditors worse than unsecured creditors? Some of these secured creditors were retired teachers and police officers.

Del Dolemonte on June 30, 2012 at 1:51 PM

Can ObamaCare ObamaTax survive success?

NotCoach on June 30, 2012 at 1:51 PM

Since it’s a tax will there be IRS agents stationed in ER’s to check ID & see if folks coming in have either paid a private company for insurance, have some form of public assistance or will then & there be assessed a fine?

batterup on June 30, 2012 at 1:51 PM

…the subsidy program to help lower-income families in the 200-400%-of-poverty-line group buy health insurance.

Good Lord, why would someone making 400% of the poverty level need their healthcare subsidized? (For the democratic base/high school dropouts, that means four times the poverty level.)

slickwillie2001 on June 30, 2012 at 1:51 PM

November elections are always more important than ever when your party is out of power isn’t? Lol

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:33 PM

As it was for you it is now for us.
LOL/

bluealice on June 30, 2012 at 1:51 PM

Conservatives need to offer something serious on health care. Merely fending off change while American health care costs render our economy uncompetitive with our peers abdicates responsibility and hands the initiative to the wrong policy makers. It erases gains made in productivity and personal income. There is an opening now to offer a plan which controls costs while encouraging the expanding the number of Americans receiving good health care.

lexhamfox on June 30, 2012 at 1:48 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban

1. Stop the Feds from regulating the sale and purchase of insurance across state lines. This is banned.

2. Vouchers for (good Lord) Medicaid recipients, and fines for abuse of the system.

3. Enable all American children access to healthcare coverage by off loading illegals.

4. Tort reform

5. Enshrine the doctrine of doctor patient confidentiality and remove the burden of defensive medicine (plaintiff’s bar)

There you go.

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:53 PM

Bachmann was on Fox news yesterday and said that they’re going to use reconciliation to repeal. They only need 50 because Romney’s VP gives them 51. You live by reconciliation, you die by it. As Paul Ryan said, this thing needs to be removed root and branch.

TxAnn56 on June 30, 2012 at 1:20 PM

She was also on Mark Levin and she said the Tea Party Caucus is encouraging all Republican Governors to refuse to set up exchanges and the Medicaid expansion as well.

Night Owl on June 30, 2012 at 1:53 PM

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Besides increasing the chances of sending Massachusetts’ medical device industries overseas and slapping huge taxes on hospitals, exactly who do you think is going to pay for all these new revenue opportunities? This middle class person can tell you with complete honesty that his election has cost us a third of our annual income. Luckily we are some of those nasty conservatives who try to live below our means but that becomes harder and harder with every increase on energy and food, and now healthcare. Good job!!!!

Cindy Munford on June 30, 2012 at 1:54 PM

Adjoran on June 30, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Drat the lack of an edit function – Senate rules do NOT allow filibusters on money bills.

Adjoran on June 30, 2012 at 1:55 PM

Here in California they can not enact this fast enough.Between Obamacare and cap and trade enacted January 2013 we can stick a fork in California.Baked to a crackly crunch.

jeffinsjvca on June 30, 2012 at 1:55 PM

He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class.
 
Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

 
They just can’t see them, ergo the constant need for that phrasing.

rogerb on June 30, 2012 at 1:55 PM

You should. He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Yeah, people hate working. Reducing the labor participation to the lowest level since Carter makes everyone just so ecstatic.

NotCoach on June 30, 2012 at 1:56 PM

If the penalty is a tax, then it really wasn’t ripe for review under the Anti-Injunction Act since it has yet to be put into effect. It doesn’t go into effect until 2014.

Make no mistake, Obamacare was going to be tossed out in whole. Roberts pulled the tax rabbit out of his bum. If you read the Libs’ “concurrence,” it reads more like a dissent against the Chief Justice. Ginsburg rants against his rulings on the CC, N&P, Medicaid, enumerated powers, police powers, etc, rulings. She knows that there is now precedent set that limits the Feds. She’s pizzed because she realises that Roberts could have just decided Obamacare on made up “it’s not a penalty, it’s a tax” creature alone and left all of the rest open to future expansion.

George W Bush’s Earl Warren, (Shrub’s Warren), er, John Roberts, for whatever reason, saved Obamacare…although it is likely to be a Pyrrhic victory in many ways. There are already numerous states on the record that have said that they will not be implementing either the Medicaid expansion nor the exchanges….and the Feds can do nothing about it. What will likely happen is states like CA will become meccas for the uninsured, which should really help their budget crises. lol

I’ve pulled some of the most important and “precious” quotes from the opinions of Roberts and Ginsburg. UpperYeastyNoyz might want to take a look and then go back and read my post about the precedents set. The idea that Roberts “joined” with the Progs on the Court is more than a tad generous. Yes, they found a way to pretzel themselves into cobbling together a majority, but there was no real consensus on the legal reasoning. In fact, Ginsburg, writing for herself and on behalf of the other 3, was quite open and scathing in her scorn of Roberts.

Quotes….

Reading Roberts II

http://predicthistunpredictpast.blogspot.com/2012/06/reading-roberts-ii.html

M2RB: Led Zepplin, live at Royal Albert Hall

Resist We Much on June 30, 2012 at 1:58 PM

The insurance exchanges aren’t going to be created and people and businesses will pay their “tax” and tell Obama to stuff it. The entire idiotic Obamacare scheme will collapse of its own weight as it should because it does nothing to solve our problems.

eyedoc on June 30, 2012 at 1:25 PM

One of the few (very few) good points Roberts made was that this tax is very low. It starts out at $95.00 and maxes out at $700.00 or so a year, based on annual income.

A lot of people may think that is a lot cheaper than the annual premium, and prefer to pay cash for medical care. If they ever get very sick or injured, they can apply for health care insurance, as the carriers cannot deny them because of a pre-existing condition.

So the carriers who thought that the mandate would bring in a huge pool of premiums to cover the expensive elderly care and pre-existing conditions, may not get the loot they were promised in the back rooms.

Wethal on June 30, 2012 at 1:59 PM

He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

LOL. According to the CBO, 75% of those predicted to be forced to pay the Obamacare Tax are the “middle class.”

http://www.pdfdownload.org/pdf2html/view_online.php?url=http%3A%2F%2Fsrc.senate.gov%2Ffiles%2Findv_mandate_distribution.pdf

Resist We Much on June 30, 2012 at 2:00 PM

Cindy Munford on June 30, 2012 at 1:54 PM | Delete | Delete and Ban

For the first time in my adult life I’m contemplating food stamps. And then I remember my childhood and what that felt like.

I’m not going to do it. The price of food is enormous; we cannot pay our other bills and eat at the same time.

God Damn Obama

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 2:01 PM

You should. He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class kulaks.

Uppereastside

yes and he just destroyed them in the middle of a recession with the help of chief justice/ghost writer roberts.

mittens on June 30, 2012 at 2:03 PM

Some of these secured creditors were retired teachers and police officers.
Del Dolemonte on June 30, 2012 at 1:51 PM

The same teachers and firefighters your party’s leader has vowed to make unemployed if he wins? Those ones?

Good luck getting all those “overpaid” teachers and firefighters to vote for your turn American against American party come November.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 2:05 PM

1. Stop the Feds from regulating the sale and purchase of insurance across state lines. This is banned.

2. Vouchers for (good Lord) Medicaid recipients, and fines for abuse of the system.

3. Enable all American children access to healthcare coverage by off loading illegals.

4. Tort reform

5. Enshrine the doctrine of doctor patient confidentiality and remove the burden of defensive medicine (plaintiff’s bar)

There you go.

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 1:53 PM

Good start, but we also need to allow insurance companies to sell stripped-down basic catastrophic-only insurance. The perception is that healthcare insurance is unaffordable is happening because both the states and now Obamacare are forcing mandates on crap we don’t need. How to do that without intefering with state regulation?

I would also like to see group-insurance negotiation allowed and encouraged by more than just employers, ie churches, credit unions, professional associations, even neighborhood associations. This levels the playing field between individuals and insurance companies, and reduces insurance companies risk from accepting those with previous conditions.

slickwillie2001 on June 30, 2012 at 2:05 PM

The people who gave us this sh!t sandwich don’t really care if it works. They’re just betting that once we start moving in this direction there is no turning back. And that’s a good bet to make.

Mark1971 on June 30, 2012 at 2:06 PM

He has done a lot of positive things for the middle class.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Resist We Much is right.

From Jim Hoft:

WSJ Chief Economist: 75% of Obamacare Costs Will Fall on Backs of Those Making Less Than $120K a Year (Video)

Stephen Moore, Senior Economics Writer with the Wall Street Journal, told FOX and Friends this morning that nearly 75% of Obamacare costs will fall on the backs of those Americans making less than $120,000 a year.

“It’s a big punch in the stomach to middle class families.”

INC on June 30, 2012 at 2:07 PM

The Dems will rope-a-dope on Obamacare until it has taken root, metastasized, and cannot be undone without a massive sustained effort. An effort the GOP will be incapable of sustaining for several reasons — lack of sufficient will, cowardice, other priorities, loss of public interest, defections in the ranks, etc.

Their strategy is an insurgent strategy. Hang on someway somehow until the enemy looses the will to fight and gives up. With many squishy milquetoast moderates like Roberts in the GOP ranks, it won’t take that long.

If Obamacare is not gone by Jan 1, 2014 it will almost certainly stay in place until the long term part of the plan — driving private health insurance companies out of business — begins to bear fruit. If Obama is reelected there is no hope. None. Not a chance.

farsighted on June 30, 2012 at 2:08 PM

I was among a group of liberals last night raising a toast to Justice Roberts for the passing of healthcare, yet listening to their conversations they had no understanding whatsoever about what the decision said or the dangers as a tax. They didn’t understand the Medicare issue, the mandate, nothing.

Let it be also said they were all well above average income and educated, and had no understanding of the havoc it will reap on median to lower income consumers, or how this tax will land on them.

itsspideyman on June 30, 2012 at 2:08 PM

Shoot, I’m paying $300.00 a month for insurance for just me so hence I am paying $3600.00 per year with a $5000.00 deductible. Hmmmmmmm, let’s see now, $8600.00 vs $700.00 and I can get insurance only if I have a serious medical condition and need it then? Hmmmmmmm, makes sense to me. Yepper!

sicoit on June 30, 2012 at 2:08 PM

Hmmmm…so if the mandate is now a tax, and taxation is subject to the Bill of Rights; if I refused to buy insurance under the auspices of it being against my belief system or something (1st amendment rights), would they be able to asses the tax penalty?
Has the court ruling just granted every individual a waiver if they chose to leverage it?

donkichi on June 30, 2012 at 1:36 PM

There is a possibility that Muslims will be exempt because they consider insurance to be the same as gambling. Why should they be exempt? Shouldn’t they have to pay the tax just like anyone else who chooses not to purchase insurance? What do they do when they have cancer or other high cost medical problems? Do we already get stuck with their bills? Questions, questions, questions….

Night Owl on June 30, 2012 at 2:08 PM

farsighted on June 30, 2012 at 2:08 PM

This post is the long version of mine.

Mark1971 on June 30, 2012 at 2:09 PM

Key West Reader on June 30, 2012 at 2:01 PM

Hold out as long as you can. I didn’t take advantage of the extended unemployment benefits for the same reason. They would make slaves of us all.

Cindy Munford on June 30, 2012 at 2:10 PM

Some of these secured creditors were retired teachers and police officers.

Del Dolemonte on June 30, 2012 at 1:51 PM

The same teachers and firefighters your party’s leader has vowed to make unemployed if he wins? Those ones?

Good luck getting all those “overpaid” teachers and firefighters to vote for your turn American against American party come November.

Uppereastside on June 30, 2012 at 2:05 PM

Thanks for admitting that you can’t answer my question. And that you ignored the first word of my sentence you cite above.

Once again, name lots of positive things O’bama has done for the middle class. Lots of them.

(Starts stopwatch)

Del Dolemonte on June 30, 2012 at 2:11 PM

Obamanomics: Economics For Dummies

Summa summarum

Schadenfreude on June 30, 2012 at 2:12 PM

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