Updates On Healthcare Reform Status
As you are likely aware, on Monday a Federal Court in Florida declared the new healthcare overhaul unconstitutional. What makes this ruling interesting is that this was the case which more than half the states- including Mississippi- were involved in. So an early win for them; but this was also the case Attorney General Jim Hood refused to be a part of. And I don’t think that is the last time that will be brought up over the next nine months.
Barbour issued this statement after the ruling: “As surprised as some people in Washington may be by the court’s ruling that the power of the federal government is limited, I am pleased to learn the Constitution still means what the framers intended.”
** In addition to the federal lawsuits, there is also the repeal legislation pending in Congress. On Monday, Sen. Thad Cochran officially signed on to repeal legislation. At the time, he was one of just four Republicans not listed as a co-sponsor but the entire caucus is now on board.
Cochran issued this statement: “Throughout the long debate on the health care reform law, I was wary of its costs and scope. I believe the President and the Democratic Congress overreached and enacted a law that imposes mandatory spending that our nation can ill-afford. It also created federal mandates for individuals and small businesses that are onerous and should be repealed as soon as possible. The 112th Congress should devote time to overturning aspects of the health care reform law that create hardships for individuals and stifle job growth through regulations and mandates on businesses. We can and should find a better way to improve the American health care system for all Americans in a manner that is transparent and equitable.”
He also signed on to legislation repealing the 1099 filing requirements for businesses, the individual mandate, and the mandate requiring employers to provide healthcare.
** Regarding the federal legislation, despite the lawsuits and repeal attempts in Washington, many states are still going through with setting up the healthcare exchanges that go into effect in 2014. This is kind of tricky because in many places you have Republicans governors who oppose the overhaul but are tasked with this responsibility.
And if they don’t do it? The feds get to. So the choice is do it yourself or let someone from the Obama administration do it for you. Still, some governors are holding out including Bobby Jindal in Louisiana and Rick Scott in Florida.
Haley Barbour, interestingly, supports an exchange and noted that legislation he backed had cleared the Senate only to get killed in the Democratic run House on three separate occasions.
Here is a statement from Barbour’s spokesman Dan Turner: “Gov. Barbour began pushing for a health insurance exchange in Mississippi before President Obama was elected. A key point to remember is that the health exchange Gov. Barbour wants is significantly different than what Obamacare envisions. The governor wants a market-based exchange with competition among providers, rather than a government-controlled exchange. As for a sunset? No.”
The sunset would allow the governor to roll back the exchange in case of full repeal or something along those lines.