Wednesday, June 27, 2012

U.S. Courts & Obamacare.

The law will cost the government about $938 billion over 10 years, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, which has also estimated that it will reduce the federal deficit by $138 billion over a decade.

The Nation needs some form of 'healthcare reform' .  The Supreme Court might cut the 2,700 page law in half. As the country awaits the U.S. Supreme Court decision on health care, more American voters continue to oppose the law than favor it.  In addition, voters are divided over what Congress should do if the high court rules parts or all of the 2010 law as unconstitutional.  FOX news Poll suggests. As released ,  43 percent want lawmakers to scrap the whole law because it can’t work without the individual mandate and 42 percent want Congress to keep what’s left of the law and see what works. The Supreme Court is expected to announce its decision on the law Thursday. Even if the individual mandate is ruled unconstitutional, millions of the uninsured would still gain health-care coverage if the ruling leaves the rest of the law intact.That's for two big reasons. One, the law contains a major expansion of Medicaid for low-income households – those with incomes up to 1.3 times the official poverty level. The second factor is the law's system of tax subsidies, designed to help more Americans afford health coverage.Consider a working-age family of four, with an income of $60,000 and no earner covered by an employer-based health plan. According to a "health reform subsidy calculator" created by the Kaiser Family Foundation, which tracks US health-care policies, this family would reap a tax subsidy of $9,308 if they buy insurance in 2014. That would cover most of a total premium cost of $14,245, perhaps putting health insurance within the family's financial reach.But without the "stick" of an individual mandate, this "carrot" wouldn't prompt all households to fully insure themselves. To take the family in the example just given, they would still face a sizable premium (nearly $5,000), plus the prospect of additional out-of-pocket expenses, capped for this family at $6,250.Senate Republicans have devised a strategy to counter attacks they lack a health care plan and spin whatever the Supreme Court decides on President Barack Obama’s health care law as a victory for their party.In a series of talking points obtained by POLITICO, Republicans lay out four possible rulings and detail how their party should respond in each of those cases. Sensitive to Democratic criticisms that they lack a plan to call their own, they will make the case that they won’t enact a 2,700 page law and will instead replace it “step-by-step” piecemeal reforms.Republicans will then try to highlight a series of health care ideas that have long been popular with their party as their preferred alternative, including by allowing small businesses “to pool resources to purchase health insurance” for employees, opening the door for health insurance to be purchased across state lines, targeting malpractice lawsuits against doctors, expanding health savings accounts and giving state governments unspecified “incentives” to lower costs.


ACA requires our elected members of Congress to access the same insurance options as their constituents. This assures that we all end up with a reasonable menu of choices in the exchanges because members of Congress will not deny themselves. Apparently, many members of Congress prefer to retain their privileged "cadillac plan" at the exclusion and expense of constituent taxpayers.
"As things currently stand, Members of Congress and their staff, until 2014, will continue to participate in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP). This program, considered among the best in the nation, allows federal employees- including Members of Congress and their staff- to choose from a wide range of health plans and select the one that best suits their needs. Note that the current plan is neither ‘government’ insurance, ‘free’ insurance nor any other sort of sweet deal that the public has been led to believe is the case. The federal employee’s program involves private insurance policies with premiums, deductibles, co-pays, etc.
Here’s the surprise – come 2014, when the lion’s share of the ACA provisions come on line, Members of Congress and their staff will be required to buy their health insurance on an exchange. In fact, their choices will be even more limited than our own. While it is expected that some 24 million people will elect to purchase their health care policy on a state run exchange, we are not required by law to do so. Members of Congress and their staff, however, must buy their insurance in this way."
Section 1312 of the Affordable Care Act
If SCROTUS kills ACA, Obama should provide universal individual health insurance access to the FEHB health plan menu that members of Congress and SCROTUS have for themselves (at taxpayer expense), and make it a full, 100% tax deduction on individual tax returns.

Here is the hypocrisy of every GOTP politician, including McConnell and Boehner and Romney - they signed the Gridlock Grover pledge to not raise taxes, and yet they all complain that "half of Americans don't pay taxes", so they promise to "broaden the base" by RAISING TAXES ON LOW AND MIDDLE INCOME WORKING AMERICANS.
Meanwhile, every working American with income under $110,000 pays FICA and Medicare tax on every dollar of income, and their employer pays a match (the full employment penalty tax). All "earned income" (aka work) above $110,000 is exempt from FICA - an incentive to hire fewer workers at higher income. ALL "unearned income" above $0 is exempt from FICA and Medicare tax - an incentive to shift income from salary (that pays up to 35% income tax + payroll tax) to stock, dividends, "carried interest" (that pays 15% income tax + 0 payroll tax).


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