The Supreme Court is going to hand down a ruling on the Affordable Care Act on June 5th. What is at issue here is whether or not the act is constitutional; specifically the individual mandate. If the mandate is found to be unconstitutional, the court then has to decide if the rest of the act can stand on its own without the mandate.
Most court watchers – people who watch what the Supreme Court does and then report on it – think this will be another 5 – 4 political decision, with the law being thrown out completely. This would not be the first decision made by this Supreme Court that was made on a strictly partisan basis: The Politicized Supreme Court
What no one is talking about, and I am not sure why, is what will happen if the Affordable Care Act (ACA), is struck down by the Supreme Court. Here are just a couple of the services that will be cut if it is determined to be unconstitutional.
Expanded coverage for young adults on their parents’ plans:
The law requires insurance plans that offer coverage of dependents to allow children to stay on their parents’ plans until age 26. Adult children can be covered on their parents’ plans even if they are married, eligible for work or student insurance, living away from home or financially independent.
Increased coverage of preventive services:
Many health insurance plans are now subject to new rules that require them to cover recommended preventive services without charging a co-payment. As a result, consumers pay nothing for services like routine screenings, vaccines, counseling, flu shots and well-baby and well-child visits from birth to age 21.
Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan:
Adults who have been refused insurance coverage because of pre-existing conditions and who have remained uninsured for at least six months are eligible for the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan. The program covers primary and specialty care, prescription drugs and hospital visits without requesting higher premiums for pre-existing conditions.
Birth control coverage:
One aspect of the preventive care coverage — and among the most discussed provisions of the new health care law — is the requirement that health insurance plans cover contraceptive services. After a widely publicized effort by religious leaders and Republican lawmakers to repeal this measure, the Obama administration announced a compromise that shifts the cost of contraceptive coverage from employers to insurance companies.
Read what else Americans will lose if the law is struck down here: Affordable Care Act Repeal Would Have Immediate Consequences
Individual components of the Affordable Care Act are wildly popular even though the overall act is unpopular. The reason is this: The Republican Party and Conservatives have been successful in demonizing the act with their lies and distortions. The Democrats have been unsuccessful of making sure that people know what is in the act.
According to this ABC News/Washington Post Poll Americans oppose the law overall by 52 – 41 percent.
This is how Americans view the individual components of the bill:
If the ACA is struck down, the Republicans will own it. They will be responsible for the health care in this country. They got rid of ObamaCare. What is going to replace it? How are they going to get rid of people being thrown off of their insurance when they get sick? How are they going to structure preventative medicine? Who is going pay for that and for women’s contraception? The answer to all of those questions is that the Republicans have no plans to do anything about health care. Republicans care more about protecting the profits of the insurance companies than helping the average American.
The only bright side here is that if the Supreme Court strikes down only the individual mandate, the insurance companies are going to be up on Capitol Hill demanding the law be amended since without the mandate, people could literally buy insurance coverage on the way to the hospital and then drop it when they get out.
I think we could get a Medicare for all option financed by payroll taxes. The insurance companies could be supplemental insurance like they are now for Medicare. If the individual mandate is unconstitutional, then the only way to cover everyone is to have Medicare for all. After all, that program has already been deemed constitutional. Striking down the law could actually turn out to be a good thing for the American people if we end up with a public option or better yet, single payer, (Medicare for all).
Read more about the law here: