The US Supreme Court had it’s second of three days for this historic case today, and it appears that the Republican appointees may band together to strike down Obamacare. This would be a huge blow to Obama since it has been his biggest achievement in his Presidential term, and it would be happening just months before the election. Many justices expressed concerns about Obamacare that it forces citizens to “act” and changes the Federal governments power from being limited to being all powerful. Another justice called the penalties associated with not buying insurance as a subsidy from the young and healthy who don’t want to buy insurance to those who need a lot of care. Another said that the law would “require people who are never going to need pediatric or maternity services to participate in that market.”
If enacted, Obamacare would extend coverage to 32 million people who currently do not have insurance. The healthcare industry already accounts for about 18% of our nations economy. Toppling this law would be the biggest overturn that the Supreme Court has tackled since the 1930s when it voided parts ofFranklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal.
The court will most likely make its decision in late June.
Anyone who buys thier own health insurance, or anyone who sells it, knows that the system is terribly broken. Insurance companies are turning down coverage for thousands of people who would normally be considered healthy. If they don’t turn them down completely, then coverage is often limited by not covering certain conditions. For example, I recently helped a gentleman who is taking cholesterol medication obtain some health insurance. He was accepted for coverage but with the condition that medication for cholesterol would not be covered. He decided to accept the coverage that was offered and just pay for his cholesterol medication himself. The plan is going to cost him over $500 per month, just for him. For his age, this was actually a good rate. He is in the red zone: too young for Medicare, but old enough that insurance companies consider him an expensive risk.
Now lets say that this gentleman could not afford an extra $500 per month for health insurance and did not want to buy it. Obamacare would force him to buy it, or something like it. And if he did not buy it, he would be penalized with a tax/fee/penalty. Can anyone explain to me how that fixes the problem of the high cost of healthcare? Yes, it would put more money into the insurance companies pockets. And it would put more people into doctors offices because now they can see a doctor for a mere copay. But it doesn’t seem to address the real problem of how expensive healthcare and health insurance really is. Forcing more people to buy it would also mean forcing insurance companies to cover everyone, which may actually make insurance premiums go higher. Unless the government is going to subsidize the cost of it with more taxpayer money. I think we all know that is not a good solution. But what is the right answer? If the government can make us buy health insurance, then why couldn’t they make us also brush our teeth and go to the gym every day. Sure, those are good things to do. But is that the government’s role? I welcome your comments and suggestions.