D.C. Court Ruling Deals New Blow to Affordable Care Act
Bottom line: Red State Refusenik Governors might have succeeded in cutting millions of children, poor, and elderly off from affordable health care. Deaths from lack of preventative care are likely to result if this ruling stands. So be expecting some “if they’d only had insurance” horror stories during coming election cycles because these deaths will occur in some refusenik red states if people lose insurance as a result.
Update 2: per Charles Gaba, this might affect only 18 states instead of 36, more to come & I will update again after his next post. See summary from his article below:
If you’ve read this far, you get the point. It’s conceivable that we could be looking at the following scenario:
15 “State-Based Marketplaces” (CA, CO, CT, DC, HI, KY, MD, MA, MN, NV, NY, OR, RI, VT, WA)
2 “Supported State-Based Marketplaces” (ID, NM)
7 “Partnership” Marketplaces (AR, DE, IL, IA, MI, NH, WV)
7 “Plan Management” Marketplaces (KS, ME, MT, NE, OH, SD, VA)
2 “SB-SHOP” Marketplaces (MS, UT)
…leaving only 18 actual completely “Federally-Facilitated Marketplaces” (AL, AK, AZ, FL, GA, IN, LA, MO, NJ, NC, ND, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, WI and WY).
Update 3: another court rules in favor of ACA.
In a second decision on the same issue, a federal appeals court in Richmond on Tuesday ruled in favor of government subsidies for people signing up for Obamacare health coverage. That differed from a decision earlier in the day by a federal appeals court in the District of Columbia that went against the administration.
Original Breaking story from the LA times:
President Obama’s healthcare law was dealt a new blow Tuesday as a federal appeals court ruled that due to a wording glitch in the Affordable Care Act, some low- and middle-income residents are not entitled to receive government assistance to subsidize their insurance.
In a 2-1 vote, a panel of judges on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia rejected the Obama administration’s argument that the problem was triggered by imprecise language in the complex law and that Congress had always intended to offer the subsidies nationwide to low- and middle-income people who bought insurance through one of the state or federal health exchanges created under the law.
As written, the law states that subsidies should be paid to those who purchase insurance through an “exchange established by the state.”
That would seem to leave out the 36 states in which the exchanges are operated by the federal government.
Digby’s take: The Republican Party run by the modern conservative movement is the most effective and successful minority party in history.
Kevin Drum’s lawyer friend is pessimistic about the outcome if the case reaches SCOTUS : motherjones.com