Find out more →

Get unlimited access. Become a digital member!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Conflicting opinons on Affordable Care Act

Posted By on Tue, Jul 22, 2014 at 10:15 AM

UPDATE: Here are two separate judicial decisions. One is judicial activism, but conservatives will love it.

* A WIN FOR ACTIVISM: A D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals panel has ruled 2-1 (two Republicans in the majority) that participants in federally operated health insurance exchanges in 36 states cannot qualify for federal subsidies. These are the states, including Arkansas, that didn't set up their own health insurance marketplaces and left it to the government.

The ruling does not affect the private option version of Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. But some 40,000 Arkansans have signed up for the exchange, most of them receiving subsidies. About 5 million Americans are receiving benefits in the affected states.

* A WIN FOR THE OBAMCARE LAWNot long after the 4th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled 3-0 that indeed federally run exchanges COULD qualify for subsidies.

In the 4th Circuit decision, Gregory wrote that it's "clear that widely available tax credits are essential to fulfilling the Act’s primary goals and that Congress was aware of their importance when drafting the bill." He noted that only 16 state-run Obamacare exchanges are currently in place and that the economic framework for the law would "crumble" without federal exchange subsidies.

"Furthermore, without an exception to the individual mandate, millions more Americans unable to purchase insurance without the credits would be forced to pay a penalty that Congress never envisioned imposing on them," he wrote. "The IRS Rule avoids both these unforeseen and undesirable consequences and thereby advances the true purpose and means of the Act."



Short run: Status quo.

The Obama administration will ask for a ruling by the entire D.C. Circuit. Opponents can do the same in the 4th Circuit. Whatever either court decides will be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. With a conflict between the circuits looming, the Supreme Court will have to enter the battle.

A practical battle looms in states that didn't set up exchanges if the adverse D.C. Circuit decision holds. Will they really insist that working taxpayers be stripped of federal subsidies in a fit of ideological zeal to continue their battle against Obamacare?

Normally, conservative Republicans don't like judges who mess with the laws of Congress and state legislatures. Except when they like the outcome.

David Ramsey has backgrounded this fight for us previously. And also here.

He notes that the average premium for people who gets subsidies in Arkansas is $94 a month. Without the subsidies, it would be $387. So, sure, if this opinion holds, can I get a Republican vote for royally screwing those 36,000 Arkies (90 percent of those on the exchange get subsidies)?

PS — Tom Cotton, naturally, praises the D.C. judicial activism, which dissenter Harry Edwards describes as just an effort to gut the law. If you can't pay for your own health coverage, Tom Cotton says, "tough." Cotton calls the subsidies "unlawful," in a news release issue either before or maliciously disregarding the 4th Circuit ruling.

Tags: ,

Favorite

Speaking of Obamacare, insurance Exchanges

Comments (26)

Showing 1-26 of 26

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-26 of 26

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Suspect identified in Texas shooting at Muhammad cartoon contest

    Dallas Morning News has comprehensive coverage on the shooting of two men outside a Muhammad cartoon contest held in a Garland, Texas, public school building. The FBI reportedly has confirmed that one of the men killed was Elton Simpson of Arizona, who'd previously been investigated for terrorism ties.
    • May 4, 2015
  • Piranha caught in Lake Bentonville; not to worry

    A piranha was caught last week in Lake Bentonville, KATV reports, but a state Game and Fish Commission spokesman says it's no cause for alarm.
    • May 4, 2015
  • More »

Most Shared

  • Clinton rules return

    As a professional matter, I've been halfway dreading Hillary Clinton's presidential candidacy. The 2016 Democratic nomination appears to be hers for the asking. Democrats enjoy a strong Electoral College advantage. And yet it's hard to imagine how she can overcome the unrelenting hostility of the Washington media clique.
  • Gene Lyons gets to the heart of 'Clinton Cash'

    Gene Lyons gets to the heart of the "Clinton cash" so-called scandal, a Whitewater-style investigation so far that has been long on innuendo but short on damning facts.
  • Bass Pro opens megastore in Memphis' Pyramid

    Brass Pro Shops opened a new megastore and hotel today in the former Pyramid arena in Memphis. Kat Robinson and Grav Weldon are providing photo coverage.
  • Asa's talk is cheap

    Asa Hutchinson seems so much nicer about his belief in legal discrimination. But the result is more dangerous. You can be falsely lulled, as the national press has been, into believing Hutchinson is a moderate.
  • Christian soldier

    When he announces next week that he is again running for president, Mike Huckabee will tap into one of the world's great traditions of political combat: religious fear.

Most Viewed

  • City steps up police presence in Centennial Park

    The Little Rock Police Department has assigned an extra patrol to the Centennial Park area after a complaint by a property owner got Mayor Mark Stodola's attention. Paul Dodds, who lives on West 17th Street and Park and whose company Urban Frontier LLC has fixed up 10 properties for sale and rent and owns several more, emailed Stodola, the city board of directors and the police chief on Sunday. Stodola today directed City Manager Bruce Moore to increase "directed patrols" in the park area and "have Entergy light this place up like it is daytime. With summer break upon us we need to stifle this activity before it gets worse."
  • Cotton's tactics on Iran bill backfire

    Sen. Tom Cotton's unforced error ends up sinking GOP strategy on Iran bill. Cotton apparently getting comfortable with the idea of being Ted Cruz 2.0.
  • Health care task force narrows choices for consultant to four

    The first big task for the Health Reform Legislative Task Force, the task force pushed by Gov. Asa Hutchinson to examine alternatives to the private option, is hiring a consultant. The task force met today and examined and discussed six proposals, narrowing the list down to four candidates .
  • State Police: teen rescued from human trafficking operation, NLR woman arrested

    The Arkansas State Police announced today that they have recovered a 15-year-old girl from a south Little Rock motel where they say she was being held against her will and sexually exploited.
  • The slow Monday open line and video

    Here's an open line.

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2015 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation