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Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Having upheld the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act under the Congressional taxation power, by a 5-4 majority, the Supreme Court has also delivered a personal vindication to Barack Obama  — and given the lie to Mitt Romney’s accusations about the president’s lack of “leadership.”  The irony of the court’s majority decision, written by Chief Justice John Roberts, is its exposure of Romney’s own leadership deficit.

For the Republican candidate, the Supreme Court decision does more than merely shut down the Tea Party arguments he has echoed over the past several months. Regardless of the details — not all of which are salutary, especially concerning Medicaid — the conclusion of this episode in law and politics is a grave wound to Romney’s image and, if he still possesses any, his self-respect. Here is a man who imposed a mandate on his own state’s citizens, in order to achieve universal coverage, and then ran away from his own actions for pure political expediency.

Now the Obama administration must do what it should have done over the past three years: Persuade the American people that the act’s survival is a victory for them. Had the Supreme Court’s right-wing majority vacated all or part of the Affordable Care Act as unconstitutional, said Mitt Romney, then the president would have “wasted” his term in the White House. “If… Obamacare is not deemed constitutional, then the first three and a half years of this president’s term will have been wasted on something that has not helped the American people,” the Republican candidate told supporters at a rally in Virginia on Wednesday. “If it is deemed to stand, then I’ll tell you one thing. Then we’ll have to have a president, and I’m that one, that’s gonna get rid of Obamacare,” he vowed.

Well, whatever Romney means by “Obamacare,” he no doubt assumes that to most Americans it represents ill-advised and even oppressive legislation – and never mind its well-documented paternity in his own Massachusetts health care plan. Having once embraced the objective of universal coverage and the mandate as its means, he evidently believes that he can abandon principle without consequence. Yet he and his fellow Republicans, who have vowed to uproot health care reform, will surely discover, along with the American people, that its benefits are indeed popular – and that its would-be killers may pay a heavy political price.

The long-term predictive value of polls showing that most voters revile “Obamacare” is questionable, if only because surveys have demonstrated how little most voters still know about the actual content of the Affordable Care Act. When people are asked about the bill’s specific aspects,  they approve nearly all of the important provisions by overwhelming margins. And however ignorant they may be now, their knowledge is likely to improve when they learn what is being taken from them.

Consider the recent Reuters/Ipsos poll, which found substantial majorities of Republicans and independents — and voters overall, by a margin of 56-44 percent — reaffirming that they oppose the law.  But delve below surface impressions and it becomes clear that what the law does, except for the individual mandate,  is popular not only among Democrats and independents but, as both Ezra Klein and Greg Sargent have noted in the Washington Post, among Republicans as well.

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Copyright 2012 The National Memo
  • politicalhack1

    I live in a retirement community and am constantly surprised at the know nothing tea partiers that reside here. They somehow think that medicare is separate from government and not a “socialist” program. As to others, they seem to think that the mandated coverage by all is somehow not necessary to a health care program involving the market and insurance companies.

    The moves toware oligarchy and plutocracy of citizens united and the attempts of the wealthy few to control everyone else, will ultimately lead to a “hot” levelling of the playing field if it is not quelled now. Included will be a national health plan or a medicare for all system. They will pay private premiums or a flow thru thru the government. In the meantime, it seems, we will have to listen to the bellowings of the know nothings and the crack pots that now make up the right.

    I have long marveled how the american electorate so often voted against its own self interests, but this is getting ridiculous!

  • middleclasstaxpayer

    Obviously you are NOT paying for your own healthcare. My premiums have risen over 33% since Obamacare was suggested. And now my company paid portion of health care has been ELIMINATED COMPLETELY by my firm…They say they can’t afford to pay the health care bills for employees & retired workers any longer…all this has occurred SINCE Obamacare was passed….and this, unfortunately, is only the beginning of the bad news.

    • howa4x

      If the law was fully in effect then there would be insurance pools set up by the state to help those like you who has had their insurance go up. Employers in this country want to maximize profits at the expense of their workers and are shifting more of the benefit cost to them. That is not the fault of the law rather it points to their greed, which is the new american corporate disease.

      Let’s go back to when the law wasn’t here. 1st off the insurance company could drop you for pre existing conditions at any time if you are providing your own Ins. Your kids between the ages of 22- 26 would not be covered. children with pre existing condition would not be able to get insurance or if they did with exorbident premiums.
      Insurance companies could drop high risk individuals like when Atneas stock recieved a downgrade because they only returned 18.5% profit instead of 20%. Atnea purged 8.5 million from coverage. The medicare hole in insurance coverage would still be there and preventative tests would not be free, and staying with medicare, hospitals would still get paid if they have to do a surgical procedure again because of their own mistake, and there is much more.

      Would you like to go back to that?

    • flyinjs

      How would YOU liked to be turned down by your companies healthcare plan because YOU may have pre existing conditions?

      You are one selfish group of republican folk that will need to look your maker in the eye one day.

    • What world have u been living in thats has been an issue since before current President.Just not spoke about as it is now…..Check yourself

    • I’m A Middle Class Tax Payer And I Know Voting For Romney Is The Beginning Of The End Of The Middle Class!! Romney Has Lined His Staff With 17 Members Of Bush Old Staff That Means More Trickle Down Polices That Got This Country In Trouble In The First Place!!! There Will Be No More Middle Class!!!! Romney Handlers Are The Koch Brothers And The Rest Of The Wealthy, Greedy, Jobs Shipper Overseas Terrorists That’s Bring This Country To It’s Very Knees!!!

    • The premiums went up just like every year but it has been noted that the premiums since the AHCA was passed did not go up as much as it would have with out the AHCA. This bill did not make premiums go up they were already doing it and for far more.

  • I’m Voting For Our POTUS Because He’s For All The People Here!! Mr Strip And Ship And His American Taliban Is Only For The Wealthy And Don’t Give A Damn About America Nor It’s People! When You Hire Some Of The Very People That Got Us In Trouble In The First Place, Like Romney Has, It Will Be More Lies, More Tax Breaks For The Wealthy, More Shipping Jobs Overseas And More Wars!!! That’s What They Think About America And It’s People!!!! Obama/ Biden 2012

    • “Mr Strip And Ship And His American Taliban!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

      — LOVE IT!

    • Your loose in the caboose..or something! You want a man to run this country that will not salute our flag? Has attended flag burning ceremonies with his wife, Moochie? has just sent about 80 million dollars to Kenya for their support when America is in such an economic depression? Has spent more of the taxpayer dollar on luxurious vacations than any potus in our history? Has been a documented member of various socialist and communist groups? Has no more experience running this country ( as shown) that any other community organizer? Thinks he is a king instead of president? Shows a clear and expressed disregard for our constitution? Has pandered , YES..PANDERED, to gays, abortionists, illegals,muslims? And last, but certainly not least, he, himself in his book has told us that he will side with the muslims if push comes to political shove!

      • You Are One Lying Cockeyed Bastard You Just Like Mr. Strip And Ship!! All You LIARS Earn You Masterd Degrees In Lying And CHAOS !! Regina Unless You Got Big Money You Will Be Screwed!! So Don’t Talk To Me With Your Lying Dumb Ass!!!

      • You Are Just Another Butt Sucking ReThug Kissing The Koch Brothers Asses!! Stupid Bitch!!!

      • You Don’t Like It MOVE!! Ron Paul Got An Island MOVE In With Him!!

      • Romney Been Flip Flopping And Lying His Way Thru-out His Like Just Like You The Man A SOCIOPATH!! Don’t Pray For Me Pray For You Damn Self Cause You Need It!! TROLL

      • This Is America You Don’t Like It LEAVE!!! Pray For Your Damn Self!!! Take The American Taliban With You Also With Mr Strip And Ship!!

  • And one hopes the Supreme Court strikes it down – – and, for the same reasons(s), espoused by the Writer here. We want, and need – – a Single Payer – Universal Health Care Plan! and . . . we needed it yesterday!

    It’s NOT Rocket Science! Place everyone that wants Health Care, under the Highly Successful Medicare Program. Seniors LOVE it! The infrastructure is in place; and people do understand, how it works. It also tends to be fair and equitable. (If there is Fraud in the System – – get rid of it!)

    Will it happen? Why hasn’t it happened? That, dear friends, is a, “no brain’er.” The Rich Republicans are trying desperately to protect, “Big Money,” in the Health Care Industry. These Insurer’s are pocketing 30 – 33%, in profits from the current, so-called, free market system; which is a cruel hoax; but that is an issue to be explored another time.

    By most estimates, the U.S. Government could save over $400 BILLION DOLLARS, by adopting such a plan. We simply can no longer afford paying about 2.5 times, what other Developed Nations are paying for Health Care. Folks, WE ARE BROKE! Every decision the Government makes – – and, poor and rich alike, must recognize and accept the FACT, that every decision moving forward, must be economically effective and efficient! We can no longer continue to, “Play Politics,” with the very survival of the Country. at stake. It’s time for once, to do something RIGHT, and lay partisan politics aside. This isn’t the Country that our Parents and Grand Parents left to us; nor, is it anything near, what the Founders had in mind. One Percent of the Population is very Rich; 90%, are struggling everyday; the Nation is Broke, and weak in Spirit and Trust; We are fading fast on the International Scene; and, we have 50 Million People living in Poverty; including 25% of young Children. The Greed, Selfishness, and Manipulation of Markets has to stop!

    Consider this: How did the Richest, and Leading Creditor Nation; become the Poorest, and Leading Debtor Nation – – all, in a Period of 35 years? There are answers to be found; FIND THEM!

    Do the Right Thing from this Day Forward . . .


    • SaneJane

      I agree with everything you say except that the country is broke. Claiming that we are broke is the main weapon in their arsenal. How can a monetarily sovereign country be broke? This is the illuminating truth that they don’t want us to realize. They use the deficit and national debt to smack us around on every issue that involves the best interests of ordinary people. Healthcare, No, we are broke. Education, No, we are broke. However, there is always plenty of money for a few wars. I urge you to research the makeup of what they fondly call our “national debt” and why they like to say we are a “creditor nation”. The country is not poor, just 99% of the people. There is a BIG difference. You should read some of Rodger Mitchell’s articles on this subject.

      • That is what I always say, it not about being broke, it is about where we choose to spend our money. As long as the Government is collecting taxes, we are not broke. Everyone in the entire Country would have to have no income for the Country to be broke.

      • Jane,,what that means is there is no money for human resources, etc…yes! But as long as someone is in control of the money and spending of it, what difference does it make if the money exists or not because we as a people must do as we are told and deal with the issues that our big brother government creates for us. An honest man or woman in the presidency would not carry on with such a bag of chit lies and deception to further their own agenda! PERIOD!

  • Obama Care Upheld!!!!!!!! The American Taliban Is Going Down!!!!!!!!!!

  • I was delightfully surprise this morning by the Supreme Courts decision. Perhaps Justice Roberts is getting concerned about his legacy. President Obama is a thoughtful, intelligent person, as President he uses those qualities to make good decisions. This brings us one more step closer to Health Care For All. It will also be a new “cash cow” for the health insurance industry. Sounds like a “win win” to me. Everyone should be happy, but the Crazy Right of the Republican Party will find some way to claim it makes the President look bad.

  • middleclasstaxpayer

    My premiums never advanced by more than 1 or 2% per year in last 30 years…now all of a sudden I get a 33% INCREASE in ONE YEAR, and you think it’s NOT bacuase of Obamacare???? Are you mad??? To make matters even worse, my employer now says they CANNOT AFFORD to continue our company-paid health benefits, so we must do so ourselves…that is we now PAY FOR ALL OUR PREVIOUS company-paid benefits OURSELVES? And you think the “affordable health care bill” has nothing to do with it?????

    • If you really want to know what happened to your policy and the increase I suggest that you read the various reports from the Kaiser Foundation. All of them make it clear that your increase is not the result of ACA. A very small percentage of the increase is directly related to ACA and is mostly caused by other reasons.

      • middleclasstaxpayer

        And why do you suppose my employer has cancelled ALL our company-paid healthcare coverage? “Other reasons”, I suppose???

        • ralphkr

          Very simple, middleclasstaxpayer, your boss knows that in the current Republican crippled economy that none of you shall stomp off the job just because your pay was cut. I am just puzzled as to why he did not do this to you 3 or 4 years ago. By the way, a neighbor of mine owns a small business and he tells me that now he can afford to offer health insurance to his employees (and himself) because of pending ObamaCare provisions. He is very pleased because even during the Clinton boom years he could not afford to offer health insurance.

          • middleclasstaxpayer

            You must be living in an old-age home….here are the real facts: As part of my work, I have the opportunity to meet with / talk with four small & mid-sized businesses each day….with 250 work days / year that’s about 1,000 businessmen every year. Over the last 12 months, at least HALF (500 businesses) told me they will be forced to cancel their healthcare benefits because of costs. Of the other 50%, most are CUTTING BACK on their healthcare offerings…same problem…COSTS. The GAO itself predicts that this healthcare bill will add a TRILLION dollars to the deficit over the upcoming years. And WHO is going to pay for the estimated one MILLION ILLEGAL ALIENS who are now being welcomed into our country? Remember, most of them don’t pay taxes, and are not “on the books” work-wise. You think you’ll be getting “something for nothing” but you are in for a BIG & COSTLY SURPRISE!

          • ralphkr

            Sorry, middleclasstaxpayer, after the beating that my investments took from 8 years of a Republican President I can’t afford to live in an old-age home but have stay in the house I bought in 1992 (for cash) and keep on paying the high property taxes. By the way, back in the 70s I had the misfortune of living on the coast in Southern California and, guess what, NONE of the small businesses had health insurance for their employees (nor shall they be required to under ObamaCare). The only exception to this were employees of grocers but they aren’t really a small business. I am not going to gain anything from ObamaCare because I have private health insurance (do not have either SS or Medicare because of too many years as LEO, military, and other uncovered jobs) other than that I expect my income tax to go up by about $4K but I consider that a good investment since my great-grandchildren shall be able to have health care (none of them are covered by private health insurance and never will be in the foreseeable future).

            I find it interesting that today illegal aliens do not pay taxes or FICA but are being given tax refunds and collecting SS (according to Republicans). 20 years ago when I knew many people who had a majority of illegals in their workforce I know that they were withholding state and federal taxes and FICA from everyone’s checks but the illegals could never collect SS or tax refunds because they had fake SS numbers so it was out and out profit for the gov’t (unless the employer did not turn in the money and then it was extra profit for the boss).

            Also, there is absolutely no excuse for universal health care to add to the Federal debt since the per capita cost of health care should actually drop by a minimum of 25% and up to 50% from what was spent in 2009. The US has consistently spent a minimum of 25% more per capita than the most expensive health care nation (Switzerland where the system is run by insurance companies) and double the average spent by ALL industrialized countries.

          • middleclasstaxpayer

            Great description of the problem. Thanks

    • While I would agree that your health insurance dilemma sucks, you’re looking in the wrong place for the reason. Better to try to educate yourself before spouting off as to something you clearly know nothing about. The ACA was designed to prevent the very problem you are whining about.

      • middleclasstaxpayer

        Yes, I agree that that’s how it was “sold” to us, ie, that it would REIGN IN health care costs….but we were “SOLD” a FALSE PROMISE….everyone I speak with on this topic has had the same experience…..DRASTICALLY INCREASING HealthCare COSTS since Obamacare was “approved” by the congress…we were LIED TO…they told us congress “needed to approve the bill to find out what was in it???” Would YOU purchase or approve ANY contract without knowing what the details were? If you would, you are dumber that most rational folks!

        • ralphkr

          I have news for you, middleclasstaxpayer. Over 95% of all bills passed are passed without the Congressmen knowing what is in the bill. Even the lobbyists, who write most of the bills, do not really know what is in the final version because everyone tacks something on to every bill.

    • ralphkr

      Very interesting, middleclasstaxpayer, as my premiums increased by much more than 1 or 2% per year for a number of years until the last couple years and my premiums actually went down this year. About 25 years ago my premiums nearly doubled in one year even after I dropped from the high option (low deductible, low copay, no lifetime limit) to the low option (high deductible, high copay, lifetime limit to payments) plan.

      According to a study published by health insurance economists back when Obamacare was being debated in Congress insurance premiums would go up by 39% if Obamacare passed. At the end of the same study the tame economists estimated that premiums would go up by over 80% if Obamacare was NOT passed. After a few of us noticed the latter prediction and started discussing it on line that study miraculously disappeared from the insurance consortium’s website.

      • That’s Cause They Knew What Was Coming And Tried To Be Slick By Doing That!

        Middleclasstaxpayer Is Just One Of The Damn Fools Running Loose Lying His Ass Off Trying To Drum Up Votes For Mr. Strip And Ship Lying Flip Flopping Ass!!

  • Perhaps we should not treat the TEA PARTY so harshly. After all it does provide a club where even the stupidist Americans are not turned away. Indeed, it was created specially for the truly weakminded.

    BTW — I’m looking forward to seeing how the talking heads on FOX try to spin the SCOTUS decision to maintain our new health reform law. I’ll bet that John Robert’s tea party membership card will be revoked. Good for him.

    • ralphkr

      Did you hear the latest? The reason Roberts became a traitor to the US was because he was doped up by his doctors (anti-epileptic drug) and has lost his ability to reason! This is from an unassailable source, namely, an unnamed doctor (you cannot refute an unknown person, right?) quoted on “Savage Nation” by who else but Savage.

  • HA HA HA!!! I just heard on the TV that the Affordable Health Care Act was UPHELD by the Supreme Court!! Eat it Romney!!

  • onedonewong

    Obamacare is easy to stop the Congress won’t appropriate any $$