A project of the Galen Institute
President Obama reentered the political battle over healthcare Tuesday, delivering an extended defense of the Affordable Care Act as the Supreme Court prepares to issue its ruling on a case that could strip away health insurance from millions of Americans.
President Barack Obama declared Tuesday that his 5-year-old health care law is firmly established as the “reality” of health care in America, even as he awaits a Supreme Court ruling that could undermine it.
“This is now part of the fabric of how we care for one another,” he said.
Obama defended the health care overhaul during an address to the Catholic Health Association Conference in Washington, just days ahead of an anticipated decision by the Supreme Court that could eliminate health care for millions of people.
Obama poked fun at opponents who have issued “unending Chicken Little warnings” about what would happen if the law passed. None of those predictions have come true, Obama argued.
New York Times
The Obama administration’s top health care official said Wednesday that if the Supreme Court stopped the payment of health insurance subsidies to millions of Americans, it would be up to Congress and state officials to devise a solution.
“The critical decisions will sit with Congress and states and governors,” Sylvia Mathews Burwell, the secretary of health and human services, said at a hearing of the House Ways and Means Committee.
The Obama administration is doubling down on the Affordable Care Act this week, as a U.S. Supreme Court decision that could dismantle the plan looms in the near future.
In a contentious House Committee on Ways and Means, HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell said President Barack Obama will not consider any GOP proposals to strike down the law's insurance mandates.
Burwell acknowledged, however, that the administration would rely on Congress for a fix.
Wall Street Journal
Among presidents in modern times, Barack Obama stands apart in the intensity of his remarks on Supreme Court cases, a soon-to-be published article in Presidential Studies Quarterly concluded.
Mr. Obama added a new data point on Monday, saying at a news conference that “under well-established precedent, there is no reason” the administration should lose a challenge to the Affordable Care Act pending before the court.
The Cato Institute
We’ve famously been told that the Department of Health & Human Services has no Plan B. But what if the Supreme Court forces the executive branch’s hand? Yes, there’ll be plenty of finger-pointing and demagoguery as a high-stakes game of chicken unfolds among the White House, Congress, and various state governments. But what could Obama/HHS do? Remember, this is the president who has a pen and a phone, and “if Congress won’t act, I will.”
The running joke is that HHS/IRS will simply promulgate another rule deeming all federal exchanges to be state exchanges. But that couldn’t possibly be the answer, could it?
As expectations rise that the Supreme Court will slap down the federal subsidies to help low- to moderate-income Americans get health insurance, a new poll finds that voters want the system reformed and would reward politicians to come up with a fix.
The Public Policy Polling survey found that 61 percent of Americans believe that those eligible for subsidies should be able to get them no matter what state they live in.
What's more, the poll done for the progressive group Americans United For Change finds that most, no matter which party, want the law fixed to provide subsidies even if they are struck down by the court.
The Wall Street Journal
President Barack Obama expressed confidence that the Supreme Court would uphold subsidies millions of consumers use to buy health insurance, and at the same time warned of possible dire consequences if that doesn’t happen.
Speaking Monday at a news conference in Germany, at the Group of Seven summit, Mr. Obama said the case, which the Supreme Court is expected to decide near the end of the month “should be an easy case. Frankly, it probably shouldn’t even have been taken up.”
Plaintiffs in the case, King v. Burwell, argue that four words in the health law mean subsidies under the 2010 Affordable Care Act can go only to residents of the dozen states that established their own health-insurance exchanges, rather than the rest of the country, which relies on the federal government HealthCare.gov website
President Barack Obama had barely finished proposing an idea to deal with a far-reaching Supreme Court decision on Obamacare before Republicans fired back with a categorical response: Not gonna happen.
At the G7 conference in Germany on Monday, the president said if the justices strip subsidies from millions of Americans, "Congress could fix this whole thing with a one-sentence provision" making clear that Healthcare.gov subsidies are available in all 50 states. Republicans quickly fired off a rebuttal.
"Let's be clear: if the Supreme Court rules against the Administration, Congress will not pass a so called ‘one-sentence’ fake fix," Wyoming Senator John Barrasso, who is leading Republican efforts to craft a contingency plan, said in a statement.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Monday declined to discuss the details of a Republican backup plan for ObamaCare, saying that the party will be ready if the Supreme Court rules against the healthcare law.
"We'll have a plan that makes sense for the American people," the Republican leader said during an interview with The Joe Elliott Show. "If the plaintiff is successful it will require some addressing of the issue, and if that were to happen we'll be ready to announce our proposal."
The Supreme Court is expected to announce its decision this month in the King v. Burwell case, which could cancel subsidies for millions of Americans who are enrolled through the federal website HealthCare.gov.