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I'm pretty sure every Republican governor or governor-hopeful in America joins with Kossaks in hoping that the Halbig decision is reversed.

Here's a helpful map showing what will happen if it is not.

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Recall that the Roberts' court already took a tilt at gutting Obamacare by ruling that states could opt out of the Medicaid expansion. That was brutal on poor people. But if Halbig stands, it is going to hit working and middle class people - hard. That is going to be one hell of a tightrope for Republican lawmakers to walk.

7 states with Republican governors have already expanded Medicaid (Arizona, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico and North Dakota). The Republican governors of Indiana, Pennsylvania and Utah are working on face-saving mechanisms that will allow them to do the same. Three other states with Democratic governors but a Republican or split legislatures have already done the same (Arkansas, Kentucky and New Hampshire).

That's a lot of caving in just for a program that only helps poor folks.

So what happens if Halbig stands and working and middle class people in red states find that Republicans have imposed a tax increase on them that isn't being suffered by working and middle class people in blue states?

For example: how does Scott Walker explain to the voters of Wisconsin that it is in their best interests to experience a 70% rate hike that isn't being imposed on their neighbors over the state line in Minnesota?

For Republicans, this is a lose-lose proposition. If they continue to decry Obamacare as an abomination they cannot participate in - in other words, continue to refuse to set up their own state exchange -  they are raising taxes on their voters. If they cave, they alienating their base and prove how wrong the centerpiece of Republican rhetoric is.

Republicans governors and state legislatures are will either have to cave in and set up an exchange to participate in Obamacare or go to the electoral stake praising the tough love of Republican stewardship as the flaming ballots mount around them.

Apologies for the hot mess of mixed metaphors in this diary.

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Comment Preferences

  •  They can do nothing and still get elected; I (13+ / 0-)

    talked to someone this weekend who is an O-Care hater. These people are motivated by their hate. I'm surprised she didn't say n-word to me. But white people have gotten the message to not use that word in our presence.

    The racists and other teapublikkkan haters are motivated. Now, if we come up with a message of "R's want your taxes to go up" or "Rs want to take away your new health insurance" and replace it with nothing.

    Those may help.

    The people who are voting for R's hate us. They don't care as long as we are hurt.

    The R governors don't care either unless they don't  get re-elected. I am working for that in OH.

    The R's don't care.

    I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

    by a2nite on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 08:43:51 AM PDT

  •  Any idea of the total number of people (7+ / 0-)

    currently receiving subsidies?
    I'd love to see the breakdown showing how many Republicans will lose their subsidies, because that could be the end of the story.
    Not to mention that there are a lot of businesses that will be badly hurt by this (if it is upheld-which I doubt).

    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

    by CwV on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 08:46:01 AM PDT

    •  About 6.5 mil lose subsidy (8+ / 0-)

      This is just in the states under discussion.

      And, would those people still face a penalty for not buying health insurance?

      Lose-lose-lose.  

      •  We live in Pennsylvania. (9+ / 0-)

        I get a very good subsidy and it's the only way I can get insurance. My husband is on Medicare. We would probably be forced to move to Maryland or New York. Maryland, if we wanted to work in Philadelphia or NY if we decided he wanted to retire, which he's not ready to do.

        I'm still recuperating from a series of orthopedic surgeries and getting used to walking again! Losing the subsidy would be catastrophic for us, because he can't find a decent paying job because of the grey ceiling, and I'm just getting physically recovered to be able to start looking for a job!

        I would be screwed. And I really need insurance at this point. I will not let my husband take another job in addition to the one he's got. I'm scared enough because he didn't complete his full chemo for his cancer. We are trying to rebuild our finances after the years from hell, and the ACA subsidy is what is making that possible. Without, it's back to hell for us.

         

        “Judge: Are you trying to show contempt for this court? Mae West: I was doin' my best to hide it.” ― Mae West

        by Rogneid on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 09:18:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  And This Is Actually A Huge Number (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        worldlotus, Lujane

        Go back to the alleged "millions" of people who were supposedly losing their crappy insurance plans on the individual market.

        That number was wildly exaggerated but it caused a national furor. But when the conservative/Republican/Tea Party now tries to tell 6.5 million people they lose their subsidies while everyone else in the states that set up their own exchanges get to keep theirs there will be hell to pay.

        Collect Different Days

        by Homers24 on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 09:49:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Didn't you forget Ohio? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rogneid, Penny GC, Jon Sitzman, Lujane

    Governor John Kasich is a Republican.

  •  This Is Exactly What I Thought (6+ / 0-)

    After I thought about it I didn't think the DC court decision was bad for the ACA. I think its terrible news for our governor and state legislature.

    They are already literally killing people and closing hospitals by not expanding Medicaid and now they are going to tell tens of thousands of people they don't get government subsidies for the insurance they bought will people all over the rest of the country do?

    I don't think they are going to appreciate that and will now turn against them.

    Collect Different Days

    by Homers24 on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 08:50:25 AM PDT

    •  To be clear, it is going to be very painful for (8+ / 0-)

      families in red states for the few years it will take for them to force their politicians to either recant or leave office.

      •  I'm Not So Sure (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        worldlotus, Samer, Lujane

        Its one thing when red states just screw the poor over but this time its going to hurt middle class people and small business folks which are their real constituents.

        And its also a case of trying to take a benefit away from people after they've had it. That is almost always political suicide.

        I can see enough pressure coming to bear to pass state laws to join the federal exchange as well as expanding Medicaid.

        Collect Different Days

        by Homers24 on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 09:43:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  They are already on the issue with the GOP spin. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lujane

      The talking point is that "President Obama promised that you would get a subsidy and now you don't, so President Obama lied to you."

      See how easy it will be to blame it on the President.  Most of the GOP base will swallow the lie without batting an eye.

      “The future depends entirely on what each of us does every day.” Gloria Steinem

      by ahumbleopinion on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 11:01:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's much harder to take back something that has (5+ / 0-)

    already been given.

    All the people now receiving subsidized health coverage in the 36 states covered by the Federal exchange will not be running to stand in line to say to their Republican governors and legislatures - "Sure! Your selfish insanity trumps my new improved affordable access to insurance. Here's my insurance card. I'll just go back to dying due to Lack of Coverage."

    Anyone who thinks that will happen is in denial. ALL those people will motivate themselves to get to the ballot box and vote out the people who would kill them and their families.

    “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

    by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 08:54:51 AM PDT

  •  Best guess (but small consolation) (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lordcopper, Penny GC, Jon Sitzman, Lujane

    PA and ME (and we can hope FL) will have Democratic governors. NJ, DE and IL won't make a fuss and will do whatever they can to patch things up--even with Christie. Most likely, so will NM and IA.

    VA will be interesting.

  •  How Would Anyone Know? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Penny GC, Jon Sitzman, awcomeon, Lujane

    How many WI voters know how badly jobs and recession recovery are going in WI compared to other states in the region?

    We all know roughly how few Americans realize we don't have the best health care system in the world. Even its reform champion never disputed that assumption.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 09:14:40 AM PDT

  •  Not sure how the blame would translate. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lujane

    Pretty sure a victory (for Halbig) at SCOTUS would come with an affirmation that it was basically the Executive branch (i.e. Obama's) fault for maintaining a ridiculous reading of the law and bringing things to this point. The plaintiff's  losing would make the whole argument a moot point.

    So Republicans would blame Democrats, Democrats would blame Republicans, and the general cacophony of partisan politics would continue.

    (As I posted earlier, I think Halbig is going to lose, so it's going to be a moot point.  Possibly a slight Democratic political win since it'll briefly be something to bludgeon state-level Republicans on before the 2014 election.)

  •  You can already see they're concerned (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lujane

    about the possibility of a demographic overlap of would-be Republican voters with those actually helped by Obamacare.

    For one, just listen to Mitch McConnell's rantings about how Kynect, Kentucky's popular state-level healthcare reform, "isn't related" to Obamacare. Why the frantic, phony distinction, between an effective state-wide healthcare reform, and Obamacare?

    This is a man seriously on the ropes. As is the rest of his party.

    Supple and turbulent, a ring of men/ Shall chant in orgy on a summer morn...

    by karmsy on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 10:24:00 AM PDT

  •  My premium jumps from $40 to like $450-500 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lujane

    "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Wed Jul 23, 2014 at 11:04:00 AM PDT

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