On the six-month anniversary of the passage of the administration’s health care bill, Matthew Continetti made a good, if obvious, point in the Weekly Standard: health care legislation is the central achievement of the current administration.
That is why the fight to repeal and replace it is going to take guts. Nobody is going to roll over on this–at least the administration isn’t.
Continetti rehearses the reasons why this monstrosity of a law must not be allowed to stand (the folks at the Galen Institute also have a good list of potentially disastrous results):
The requirement to buy health insurance is constitutionally dubious. The law lards taxes, rules, and fees onto an already over-regulated health insurance market. Its accounting is filled with gimmicks and tricks and relies on rosy assumptions about how many people will sign up for the government-subsidized insurance “exchange.” Those subsidies may be much more expensive than anticipated, because companies probably will find it cheaper to pay a fine than pay for their employees’ health care.
Furthermore, since the fees for violating the individual mandate are also low, Obamacare may actually lead to an increase in the uninsured, as individuals wait until they are sick to buy a health plan. In the meantime, since the bill increases demand for insurance while constraining supply, premiums will rise. And when the government attempts to control the price of premiums (as with any other good), shortages will result.
Add it all up, and you have a law that will make health care more expensive and less satisfactory. It’s also a law that exposes a massive gulf between the American people and the Democrats who govern them.
Speaking of that, Joe Manchin, the popular West Virginia governor, who was for the administration’s health care legislation, has suddenly decided he’s against it.
He’s running for the Senate and it behooved him to catch up with what the citizens already knew:
West Virginia is full of the working-class families that Democrats claim are the beneficiaries of health-care reform. But these blue state voters and their Democratic Governor have figured out there’s nothing in it for them except higher costs and diminishing patient care.