"We don’t have people that become ill, who die in their apartment because they don’t have insurance… We don’t have a setting across this country where if you don’t have insurance, we just say to you, ‘Tough luck, you’re going to die when you have your heart attack.’ No, you go to the hospital, you get treated, you get care, and it’s paid for, either by charity, the government or by the hospital."
Have you seen this anti-Obama ad? The Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity is spending millions to run it nationwide. It relates the story of Shona Holmes, a Canadian who says she had to travel to the US to seek free-market treatment for a life-threatening brain tumor.
Thing is, it’s BS — and it has been since her case was first used by anti-Obamacare conservatives in a 2009 ad. It even has its own Wikipedia entry. Turns out Holmes never had a life-threatening brain cancer, but a benign growth, and she skipped out on her scheduled care to get an earlier appointment in the States. Nevertheless, AFP decided to use it for a new, deceptive ad this year.
Meantime, HuffPo relates the story of another Canadian, Ian, who does have a malignant brain cancer - and whose Canadian health benefits paid for his very sensitive care in America, even as he watched his friends to the south suffer and waste away:
Ian goes on to tell a story of a U.S. system where fellow brain tumor patients spent their time pleading with U.S. insurance companies for just one more week of treatment. The friends Ian made at the hospital had to leave treatment early because they had run out of money and the insurance companies would no longer cover the procedure.
This is important. Want to know how much you’d pay for health insurance under Obamacare? How much your deductible and copay would be? Wonder how much that “tax” penalty would be if you didn’t get insurance by 2016? Would you even pay a penalty?
Leader McConnell, and his fellow Republicans, should read the Majority ruling before they embarrass themselves further.
In the opening paragraphs of Chief Justice Roberts’ opinion, he clarifies that the law specifically does not involve a tax. If it did, Roberts clarifies, the Court would have had no choice but to reject the case for lack of jurisdiction as a tax case cannot be brought until someone is actually forced to pay the tax. This is, as we know, not the case.
The fact that the Court found that the mandate was constitutional under the taxing authority granted Congress by the Constitution is an entirely different matter. This finding does not reduce the individual mandate to the status of a tax—it merely says that as the penalty for failing to purchase health insurance will fall to the Internal Revenue Service for collection, it was something Congress could provide for under its Constitutional authority.
"It’s been more than 75 years since the Supreme Court overturned a piece of legislation as big as ACA, and I can’t think of any example of the court overturning landmark legislation this big based on a principle as flimsy and manufactured as activity vs. inactivity. When the court overturned the NRA in 1935, it was a shock—but it was also a unanimous decision and, despite FDR’s pique, not really a surprising ruling given existing precedent. Overturning ACA would be a whole different kind of game changer. It would mean that the Supreme Court had officially entered an era where they were frankly willing to overturn liberal legislation just because they don’t like it."
Marla Tipping’s 14-year-old son Cam has to have his blood cleaned every two weeks. He has a rare condition that makes his body produce too much cholesterol.
Tipping says her family has had “to be absolutely vigilant in never having a lapse in coverage … because many carriers would never carry you with a preexisting condition again.”
Most of the speculation over the fate of the Affordable Care Act has focused on the individual mandate and what the decision could mean for the 2012 presidential election. However, if the Supreme Court decides to throw out large parts of the law along with the mandate, Tipping’s family is one of millions that could lose the benefit of provisions that are already in place.
"The Supreme Court can legitimately return Obamacare?" asks a headline on the French news site 9 POK . The article slowly walks through the legal rationale behind the court’s right to wipe away Congress’s legislation. "Sans précédent, extraordinaires" reads the article. In the German edition of The Financial Times, Sabine Muscat is astonished at Justice Antonin Scalia’s argument that if the government can mandate insurance, it can also require people to eat broccoli. "Absurder Vergleich" reads the article’s kicker, which in English translates to, "Absurd Comparison." In trying to defeat the bill, Muscat writes, Scalia is making a "strange analogy [to] vegetables."
"People have no problem paying $900 for an iPad, but paying $900 for a drug they have a problem with - it keeps you alive. Why? Because you’ve been conditioned to think health care is something you can get without having to pay for it."