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ACA Agonistes
The Battle over Obamacare Is Just Beginning

Five years after Obamacare first passed in 2010, and the future of the law remains as unsettled as ever. NPR reports on the large volume of state legislation related to some aspect of the ACA:

A Center for Public Integrity review found that more than 700 Obamacare-related bills were filed in the states during 2014 or carried over from 2013 in states where legislatures allow that. (You can read in-depth about the center’s findings here.)

Some states saw 50 or more health bills each, according to data from the National Conference of State Legislatures, or NCSL. It’s not yet clear how many will be reconsidered in 2015 — many states are just kicking off their legislative sessions — but few expect any substantial retreat from the battlefront.

Some of these proposals are “liberal,” seeking to expand the scope of the ACA, some are symbolic, and some seek to restrict the law along conservative lines. Together they show there is still significant ferment over the law and its implementation—one way or the other, it has not reached the “settled law” stage as quickly as some of its supporters thought it would. As in the states, so in the federal government, where GOP leadership vows to “’strike away at [the ACA] piece by piece.’” Anything approaching full repeal certainly is not on the immediate horizon at any level of government, but this fight is nowhere near over. In fact, it may just be beginning.

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  • FriendlyGoat

    Well, of course. Republicans have no intention of giving the masses a clear path to decent insurance. They never did and they never will.

    • Peripatetic

      In a sense you are correct. Republicans have no such intention because Republicans don’t conceptualize the American public as “the masses.” Sorry, let me translate that into FriendlyGoatee: In A SENSE you are correct. Republicans have NO SUCH intention because Republicans DON’T CONCEPTUALIZE the American PUBLIC as “the masses.”

      • FriendlyGoat

        The masses are the “entirety” of the American public in Goat language. Now that you understand the translation from a dumb four-legged beast, do you have something to offer on how the Republican vision includes health care without bankruptcy for all those people?

        • JR

          At this point everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, agrees that ACA never had anything to do with controlling cost. I mean, sure, Barack Obama had to repeatedly get in front of the camera and lie that it did to get it passed. But that was so 2009. Here, in 2015, the costs are still an issue, probably more so, because giving more people access to healthcare turns out to cost money. I know, weird, huh?
          Wait until this tax filing season when a lot of taxpayers realize that “giving masses a clear path to decent insurance” in practice means their taxes go way up. Or how about 2017, when direct cash payment to insurance companies expire and they have to actually charge the market price. Sorry, i meant when “revenue neutral risk corridors” expire. Or how about 2018, when union health plans start getting taxed at Cadillac rates. I’m sure that Teamsters etc etc will be more than happy to chip in to provide “free” healthcare to “the masses”.
          Spending trillions on your preferred constituents sure is a fun way to make yourself popular. Taking trillions from others to pay for it is a lot less fun and makes you not as popular. And just wait a few years when Obamacare Medicaid expansion starts to really hit states in the wallet.

          • FriendlyGoat

            The trillions were printed, not taken. But most of that money somehow percolated upward too. I don’t hear the GOP hatching plans to reverse that, but they should be.

    • Boritz

      Where would they ever find the money to do such a thing? Oh yeah, from the masses.

    • Andrew Allison
  • Josephbleau

    Through decades of economic cycles I have seen Japan, China, Russia, and Europe gloat as to economic and Moral superiority but consistently, as like today, the United States always ends up being the most stable nation, able to support the best for its citizens and other residents, no one is hungry unless they don’t know how to apply for support, everyone can get treated for illness, even if at an ER after a wait.

    Of course this means that our country is fundamentally flawed and we are not playing fair by creating good outcomes for ourselves and not failing enough. Rainbow chasing and changing everything frequently is not the path to success. The definition of a conservative is someone who wants to support ideas that have demonstrated value instead of having the vanity to think that they know that a speculative project is needed to save man. For non conservatives the definition of a conservative is invariably “A$$HOLE” as they won’t just shut up and let the smart people spend all the money. This attitude is expressed often and very bluntly.

    • FriendlyGoat

      Emergency rooms stabilize emergency situations. They DO NOT “treat illness”.

      • Josephbleau

        You are quibbling by definition stretching.

        • FriendlyGoat

          You should be worried about people who make a little too much for Medicaid. It’s called the lower-middle class.

      • Andrew Allison

        Wrong. The are required, at least in California, to treat anybody who shows up, insured or not. Non-urgent care may entail a rather long wait, but is provided. TAI has reported more than once on the increase in non-emergency ER visits resulting from expanded Medicaid.

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