fbpx

Conservatives ask Supreme Court one more time to scrap Obamacare

President Obama’s signature health care law is under fire from conservatives. Again.

Third time’s the charm?

As multiple outlets reported Sunday, the U.S. Supreme Court will consider the fate of Obamacare again, because eradicating a politically popular law and nullifying health insurance for 20 million Americans is worth doggedly pursuing in the Trump White House and the right fringes of the Republican Party, if nowhere else.

Otherwise, it is a fool’s errand.

From The N.Y. Times‘ reporting:

The Supreme Court agreed on Monday to hear a third major challenge to the Affordable Care Act, setting up likely arguments this fall in a case that could wipe out President Barack Obama’s signature domestic achievement.

The court granted requests from Democratic state officials and House members who wanted to thrust the fate of the Affordable Care Act into the public eye just as Americans prepare to vote this November. The Supreme Court did not say when it would hear the case, but under its ordinary practices, arguments would be held in the fall and a decision would land in the spring or summer of 2021.

Democrats, who consider health care a winning issue and worry about possible changes in the composition of the Supreme Court, had urged the justices to act quickly even though lower courts had not issued definitive rulings. They wanted to focus political attention on the health law’s most popular provisions — like guaranteed coverage for pre-existing medical conditions, emergency care, prescription drugs and maternity care — and to ensure that the case was decided while justices who had rejected earlier challenges to the law remain on the court.

In the meantime, the law remains almost entirely intact but faces an uncertain future.

The case the justices will hear was brought by Republican state officials, who argued that when Congress in 2017 zeroed out the penalty for failing to obtain health insurance, lawmakers rendered the entire law unconstitutional. The Trump administration sided with the state officials, arguing that the rest of the health care law could not survive without a penalty for flouting the requirement that most Americans have health insurance, sometimes called the individual mandate.

A Federal District Court judge in Texas agreed, ruling that the entire law was invalid, but he postponed the effects of his ruling until the case could be appealed. In December, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, in New Orleans, agreed that the mandate was unconstitutional but declined to rule on the fate of the remainder of the health law, asking the lower court to reconsider the question in more detail.

With a Supreme Court this ideological, with a chief justice this confounding, I won’t attempt to predict the outcome of this case. The state of Texas is hoping the high court will follow the lower courts in scrapping Obamacare, but that’s no certainty. Chief Justice John Roberts rather notably broke from many conservatives in upholding the law in 2012.

 

Much of the reporting has centered on the political implications for conservatives, but its relevancy in this state, a state that has refused at every turn to expand Medicaid, goes without saying. More than 500,000 in NC enrolled for 2020 in the federally-run exchange. And the need, no matter the Trump administration’s attempts to undercut the law, is not in flux. It is only our leaders.

The legal arguments for tossing the law are … questionable. The moral and logical arguments are … preposterous.

Conservatives’ latest attempt to torpedo Obamacare deserves the same fate as the last two.

Load More Related Articles
Load More By Billy Ball
Load More In Commentary

Top Stories from NCPW

  • News
  • Commentary

Previous "compliance" issues of Torchlight Academy Schools, LLC leads advisory board to question proposal for Perquimans… [...]

WASHINGTON — When paid family leave was briefly dropped from congressional Democrats’ massive social spending and… [...]

The U.S. Interior Department recommended increased fees for oil and gas exploration on federal lands as… [...]

The new state budget, signed into law by Gov. Cooper, the General Assembly included a raft… [...]

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court, an institution that has upheld the basic right to legally access… [...]

Hint: It has something to do with the realities of a market economy “In less than a… [...]

These are, by any fair estimation, divided times in our country. Especially since the onset of… [...]

The post A Charlie Brown budget for NC’s schoolchildren appeared first on NC Policy Watch. [...]

Now Hiring

The North Carolina Justice Center is seeking a Courts, Law & Democracy Reporter for NC Policy Watch, to investigate, analyze and report on the federal and state judicial systems. This position will cover criminal and civil justice issues in the General Assembly and executive branch agencies, issues related to elections and voting, and other topics.

APPLY HERE.