Good-Bye Message from the Daily Dose
Thank you for reading the Daily Dose! We regret that today will be our last edition. To keep informed on the latest health care news and other important issues, please sign up for these ongoing email news services: Independent Women’s Voice, Health Care Lawsuits, Independent Women’s Forum, and The Repeal Pledge. Thank you!
Independent Women’s Forum and Independent Women’s Voice
Hadley Heath of the Independent Women's Forum offers a firsthand account of the protesters at the Supreme Court. "First, I saw ObamaCare's true colors. Pink. And Purple. And Orange. In pink and purple T-shirts, with pink and purple signs, scores of pro-abortion forces rallied, mostly on Tuesday morning. Their signs said, 'Protect Women's Health' and 'Protect the Law.' I'd later come to find out, via Facebook, that at least one of my college friends was among them. It saddens me that the debate over this law has divided the American public in such a deep and hurtful way."
The Heritage Foundation will be holding an online chat today about ObamaCare and the Supreme Court arguments heard this week. "Join us on March 30 from 12-1 ET for our 'Lunch with Heritage' online chat. Heritage’s legal expert Robert Alt will be answering all of your questions about the issues before the Court, possible decisions the Court could reach, and consequences those decisions could have on public policy."
Supreme Court Protesters Show ObamaCare's True Colors
I've spent the last three days outside of the Supreme Court building. While the circus outside is ultimately of little consequence compared to the debate inside of the courtroom, watching the protests was quite the educational experience for me. It showed me who's who in ObamaCare politics. It was a colorful crowd, and in a way reminded me of a middle school cafeteria. I felt like the new kid at school, finding it difficult to find my place. I also got to do some soul-searching about the American system.
This week, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments for National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius and Florida v. The Department of HHS to evaluate the many legal questions raised by the passage of ObamaCare, including whether Congress exceeded its constitutional power when it enacted the individual mandate.
Two years after ObamaCare was signed into law the American people are more opposed to it than ever. It is now clear that the law will impose heavy burdens on state and family budgets and increasingly possible that its mandate that all Americans purchase health insurance or face penalties will be ruled unconstitutional. As lawmakers, we need to repeal the law and do what we should have done in the first place: go step by step to reduce costs so that more people can afford insurance.
Eugene Robinson of the Washington Post sees a silver lining for the left if the Supreme Court strikes down ObamaCare. He admits that conservatives may be buoyed immediately, but: The long-term consequences, however, are obvious: Sooner or later, a much more far-reaching overhaul of the health-care system will be inevitable.
If the usual process occurs, the justices of the Supreme Court will gather around a large rectangular table Friday morning and, one by one, cast their votes on the constitutionality of President Obama’s health-care law. They will let the rest of us know the outcome in due time.
The fate of President Obama's landmark health care law likely will be decided Friday in an oak-paneled conference room adjoining the chambers of Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts. There, the nine justices will meet alone to discuss the case that transfixed Americans for three days of oral arguments this week. When all have had their say, they will vote in order of seniority.
While the rest of us have to wait until June, the justices of the Supreme Court will know the likely outcome of the historic health care case by the time they go home this weekend. After months of anticipation, thousands of pages of briefs and more than six hours of arguments, the justices will vote on the fate of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul in under an hour Friday morning. They will meet in a wood-paneled conference room on the court’s main floor. No one else will be present.
Now that I’ve woken from the first full night’s sleep since the Supreme Court’s three-day ObamaCare marathon began, I can share my thoughts on how the argument went, in case you haven’t seen my first and second days’ reports for the Daily Caller: 1. The Anti-Injunction Act: On an argument day that can best be described as the calm before the storm, it quickly became clear that the Supreme Court would reach the constitutional issues everyone cares about.
During the long, painful debate that led to the passage of ObamaCare, Republican lawmakers made a single request of their colleagues, the press and the public: Please read the 2,700-page bill. That request was mostly ignored, even by many of the members of Congress who voted for what became the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
If there was any doubt beforehand, three momentous days of argument this week established that the health-care ruling is sure to be a defining moment for the Supreme Court—and a crucible for Chief Justice John Roberts. The court's four liberals made clear their view that Congress holds ample power to require Americans to carry health insurance, as it did in the 2010 health-care law championed by President Barack Obama.
"Good morning, Pooh Bear," said Eeyore gloomily. "If it is a good morning," he said. "Which I doubt," said he. –"Winnie the Pooh." Conservatives are meant to be optimists, yet by the mutterings attending this week's Supreme Court drama, more than a few have been eating thistles with one depressive, gray donkey. To listen to this troop, the worst thing that might happen in this election season is for the court to . . . wait for it . . . kill ObamaCare.
Excerpts from Wednesday's Supreme Court arguments over whether all of President Barack Obama's health care law should fall if the individual mandate portion is found unconstitutional and whether Congress was unconstitutionally coercive when it tied Medicaid money to the expansion of Medicaid in the law: Plaintiff's attorney Paul Clement: No matter what you do in this case, at some point there's going to be ... if you strike down the mandate, there's going to be something for Congress to do.
The way to frame a Supreme Court argument meant to persuade Justice Anthony M. Kennedy is to talk about liberty. It is his touchstone and guiding principle, and his conception of liberty is likely to determine the future of President Obama’s health care law. If the administration is to prevail in the case, it must capture at least one vote beyond those of the court’s four more liberal justices, who are thought virtually certain to vote to uphold the law. The administration’s best hope is Justice Kennedy.
Heritage was at the Supreme Court for the past three days to observe the oral arguments over the constitutionality of ObamaCare. Heritage’s Todd Gaziano and Hans von Spakovsky sat in for each day’s arguments and provided immediate reaction after each session. For your convenience, we have corralled these videos and blog posts below.
House Republicans cast a potentially dangerous Medicare vote on Thursday, but any trepidation about the political consequences was overshadowed by excitement over the Supreme Court’s healthcare arguments this week. By Thursday, GOP lawmakers had had some time to digest the full six hours of oral arguments over President Obama’s healthcare law. And they’re still feeling confident the decision will go their way.
Sally C. Pipes is president of the Pacific Research Institute and author of The Pipes Plan: The Top Ten Ways to Dismantle ObamaCare. She reviews this week’s Supreme Court oral arguments and the state of health care in America, politics and all.
During Supreme Court presentations about what kind of precedent the ObamaCare mandate might set, if it’s upheld, there was some banter to the effect that maybe we might all be forced to eat broccoli. Some observers might have come away with the impression that it’s hard to think of a really bad mandate.
According to Justice Ginsburg, the central justification for the individual mandate is to prevent “free riding” by the uninsured, who allegedly impose a cost of more than $1,000 apiece on other health insurance market participants. But the dirty little secret of American healthcare is that the mandate wouldn’t save taxpayers a dime. Why? Because the tax subsidies for people with health insurance are bigger than the unpaid medical bills left behind by the uninsured.
Government lawyers say ObamaCare will fall into a death spiral if the Supreme Court strikes down the provision in the Affordable Care Act requiring everyone to carry health insurance. Without the individual mandate, they say, some healthy people will forgo insurance to save money. That will force insurers to raise premiums on everyone else, the argument goes, which will prompt even more people to drop out until only the sickest remain.
Maybe they could ask the Russians for that infamous "reset" button back? The White House has no contingency plans in place in the event the Supreme Court rules the healthcare law is unconstitutional. White House officials said Wednesday they remain “confident” that the healthcare reform law is constitutional and is implementing all the provisions of the law. If the law is thrown out, there's “no contingency plan in place,” principal deputy press secretary Josh Earnest said at Wednesday’s press briefing with reporters. “We're focused on maximizing the benefits of this law.”
Republican Sens. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) urged Congress to keep a close eye on the Food and Drug Administration after a government report found that review times for medical devices has "increased substantially in recent years."
House Republicans, buoyed by the Supreme Court's rough questioning of the administration's healthcare reform law over the past three days, are doubling down on their attacks against President Obama's signature domestic achievement. House committees are expected to see a surge of activity over the next few weeks, a House aide said, as Republicans seek to capitalize on the healthcare law's perceived legal troubles. Floor action on legislation repealing or replacing parts of the law, however, isn't expected until after the high court rules in June.
The Republican-led House approved Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-Wis.) budget plan on Thursday by a 228-191 vote, as 10 GOP lawmakers defected and not one Democrat backed the measure. The passage of the Ryan's blueprint represented a significant political victory for House GOP leaders, who have struggled to pass high-profile legislation in recent months. Democrats ripped Ryan's resolution, claiming it would end Medicare "as we know it" and predicting it would backfire on the GOP this fall.