In coming months, we will find out if the Supreme Court overrules a major portion of the Affordable Healthcare Act. Many of us were not happy that a single payer system was not pursued. At least this type of government insurance could have passed constitutional muster. Now, the Supreme Court's right wing is relishing the idea of sticking it to the Democrats by killing the health purchasing mandates of the law.
But, the old saying still applies to Republicans: Beware what you wish for, especially in an election year. Republicans have no replacement plan should the Supreme Court strike down the heart of President Obama's healthcare law. What could transpire after the Court rules in June is: no coverage for pre-existing conditions, no small business rebates, no coverage for young adults on their parents' plan, etc.
The stupidest ideas Republicans have in this area are health savings plans (kinda like school vouchers; only the well-off can afford this crap), and malpractice tort reform. These guys are too much.
No better example can be found that Republicans have no idea what they're doing in providing healthcare for all while keeping costs down than in Georgia. Since last year, after Republican Gov. Nathan Deal signed the law, the state of Georgia has allowed insurance companies from outside the state to offer health insurance to individuals and small businesses who are not part of group plans already.
It's a bust, according to a story today in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, which starts by saying:
A new law that allows Georgians to buy health insurance plans approved by other states was envisioned as a free-market solution that would lower prices and increase choices.Some state Republicans are flabbergasted that their free-maket idea for providing healthcare is dying on the vine; others are providing excuses, such as the sponsor of this legislation, state representative Matt Ramsey, R-Peachtree City, who stated that the reason this law has no takers from out of state is due to uncertainty about what the Supreme Court is going to do.
So far, the law has failed to produce results: Not a single insurer is offering a policy under the new law.
The irony of this is: if the Supreme Court overrules the Affordable Healthcare Act - what kind of uncertaintly would that bring and for how long, Mr. Ramsey? Not only that, you have NO PLAN.
Republicans flabbergasted that their idea is a bust include the state insurance commissioner, Ralph Hudgens:
“Nobody has even asked to be approved to sell across state lines,” Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens said. “We’re dumbfounded. We are absolutely dumbfounded.”Okay, so he's dumbfounded, not really flabbergasted.
Nevermind that Georgia's law would allow companies outside the state to opt out of mandated insurance coverage that insurance companies in the state are regulated to provide:
Many consumer advocates opposed the change, saying it would result in families losing protections to make sure plans contain crucial benefits. Over the years, Georgia legislators have created a significant list of required benefits such as coverage for mammograms and prostate cancer screenings and a ban on “drive-by deliveries” by requiring insurers to pay for 48-hour hospital stays for new mothers and their babies.Undoubtedly, this would cause companies to offer pretty cheap plans, but at a high cost to consumers, and eventually help to keep costs going up. Georgia is also one of those Republican-led states dragging their feet on setting up Exchanges envisioned by the Obama plan to start January 2014.
Under the new law, health plans approved under the rules of other states could be sold in Georgia, even if they don’t meet Georgia requirements.
So, what are the Republicans going to do? They're the party of "no" and represent a bunch of other odious policies, particualrly against women and the whole middle class. This party will become irrelevant one day, but not soon enough.