Thursday, March 22, 2012
US Supreme Court Hears Health Care Challenge: The Fate of the Affordable Care Act
As this Legal Analyst from Brokkings said, the two main provisions of the Affordable Care Act. Are the Individual Mandate and the Medicaid Prevision. The expansion of Medicaid, the Medicaid Prevision is just bad law and badly written. And needs to be fixed, Medicaid is already hard enough to finance. Whether its Constitutional or not, its just bad law, which I'll get to later. On a Personal Note, this is my third straight blog this week about Healthcare Reform. A big week for the ACA and a bigger one next week. Last week I wrote three blogs about Freedom of Choice alone. So maybe there's a pattern developing but what this Legal Analyst said. Should give supporters of the ACA and I'm one of them. Confidence next week, because if the Individual Mandate is a tax. If thats how its ruled and I'm not a lawyer obviously. But that tells me that it will be ruled as Constitutional, just based on that alone. Because the Federal Government clearly has the authority to tax its people and organizations. If its not ruled a tax, then opponents of the ACA still have to show that the Feds don't have the authority to require its people to purchase goods and services. So that gives me hope for the ACA next week.
Whether the Medicaid Prevision is Constitutional or not, its bad law. Medicaid is already an Unfunded Mandate and this Prevision. Adds to that by requiring States to expand their Medicaid Rolls or lose funding for their current Medicaid Coverage. The Federal Government hasn't lived up to their current obligations of funding Medicaid. In their own law that wrote in 1965 but they require States to pay for their share of the Medicaid Costs. As well as getting stuck to make up the difference from the funds that the Feds don't cover. So the Feds require States to do something, without giving them the funds to pay for it. So its already an Unfunded Mandate and the Medicaid Prevision of the ACA. Just makes that problem worst, because it requires States to cover even more people. Without giving them the funds to pay for the original Medicaid Law or the new Prevision. So the Medicaid Prevision of the ACA, whether its Constitutional or not. Needs to be fixed because its bad law.
What they should've done with Medicaid from the beginning, is to turn it over to the States. And let them set up their own Health Insurance program for the poor. And give them the funds to pay for it and require these programs just to meet basic Federal Standards. Where people on Medicaid would pay for their share of the costs. And their employers would match the other costs. And give these workers a Tax Credit, an addition to the Earned Income Tax Credit. And then Medicaid wouldn't be such a large hole to try to fill. That it is today, turn it into a program that just covers the basics when it comes to Healthcare. Healthcare that people need to survive and be healthy. And they would've saved a lot of money and could serve as a model for Health Insurance in the future.
Next week a huge week for the ACA, I'm somewhat optimistic about the ACA. Because there's a shot that the Supreme Court will punt for now. Because they may rule the Healthcare Mandate as a tax. And that they aren't ready to rule on it. Thats Plan B for supporters, Plan A is that its ruled a tax and that they are ready to rule on the Constitutionality of it. And then supporters just have to argue about the Federal Government's authority to tax.