One day, two Obamacare rulings. Depending on which side of the political spectrum you’re on, it was either time to celebrate or panic. Here’s a third option – neither. Both parties have found their political Kardashian. You get to trot it out it for photo ops, it takes up the cover of magazines and people throw money at it.
Immigration? I’m gonna let you finish, but damn, we tried to repeal Obamacare 40 times. So, what’s the news today? Well the DC Circuit court cast into doubt the legality of subsidies that form the basis of the law. Of course it was partisan, with the two GOP judges ruling for the defendants, and the one democrat dissenting.
It may be time to quit calling the third branch of government the judicial branch. It’s nothing but an extension of the legislative branch that gets to wear a robe.
The ruling was flipped on its head after Virginia judges upheld the subsidies. So, both parties get to cheer. And before republicans light bonfires and toast their victory, the DC circuit will get appealed to the full court, which leans democrat. Decision reversed.
The opinion that would gut the law was laid out by A. Raymond Griffith, who said they arrived at the decision reluctantly. “Our ruling will likely have significant consequences both for millions of individuals receiving tax credits through federal exchanges and for health-insurance markets more broadly. But high as those stakes are, the principle of legislative supremacy that guides us is higher still.”
The dissenting view accused the court of a veiled attempt of gutting the Obamacare law. So, in the end it will end up splitting the appellate courts.
That will then fling the law back to the Supreme Court again. Seriously, I’m going to Scotusblog more than ESPN at this point. My eyes are starting to glaze over.
Here’s a protip for the angry conservatives. Check the earnings of health insurance companies. Notice how they aren’t tanking? Want to know why? It’s because Obamacare is forcing people into private plans. Oh, I know it’s supposedly a bailout of the health insurance market. If you think for a second a GOP in power is going to repeal the mealticket of major corporations, you missed the boat.
They only do the repeals in the House because they know it’s symbolic. They get to beat the partisan hammer and rail against President Obama.
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Nothing like muddied court decisions to get everyone ginned up. Marco Rubio, where you at brother? “It’s just the tip of the iceberg with a law that’s also destined to either crush patients with obscenely high costs, lead to a taxpayer bailout of health-insurance companies, or both. With two conflicting appellate court rulings on Obamacare today, I reaffirm my belief that this law ultimately will fall apart.”
Translation? He’s moving to Iowa soon to gear up for 2016.
In the end, appeals will keep the status quo. If you are on subsidies, you get to keep them. Well, that’s an ominous turn of phrase. Whether or not this represents another threat to Obamacare remains to be seen. It could be a lot more devastating than the Hobby Lobby decision earlier this summer.
As for Congress fixing the law? That’s funny. We are more likely to go to war with Russia than them agreeing on fixing any language in the bill.
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