Princeton economist Uwe Reinhardt likens using the U.S. health-care system to shopping in a department store blindfolded and months later being handed a statement that says, “Pay this amount.”
Anyone who’s genuinely interested in how healthcare reform is going should read this piece by Ezra Klein and Sarah Kliff for Washington Post. They describe the individual mandate as one of several ways to expand access to healthcare: “The Obama administration believes it has four ways to pull people — both young and old — into the [health insurance] market. There are the subsidies. There’s the individual mandate. There’s the hoped-for ease and transparency of the new marketplaces. And then there’s the fact that people want health insurance.”
The U.S. Supreme Court should uphold a law requiring most Americans to have health insurance if the justices follow legal precedent, according to 19 of 21 constitutional law professors who ventured an opinion on the most-anticipated ruling in years.
Only eight of them predicted the court would do so.
Pro tip on healthcare reform: Don’t say or write that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional. That is the issue in front of the Court at this very moment. Something is only unconstitutional after the Court says that it is, and that same thing is completely and utterly constitutional up until then. If you think the Court will find the law unconstitutional, or if you think the Court should find the law unconstitutional but ultimately will not, then say so. Those can be perfectly reasonable positions. But you, blogger on the internet/pundit on the teevee/writer with a byline, do not get to decide what is and is not constitutional. Using words improperly doesn’t make you seem like the most reliable source on an issue wrought with nuance and complexity.
Here is some background on what I was babbling about.
For whatever it’s worth, I think when it hears arguments next year, the Supreme Court will decide that no one has standing to contest the individual mandate because it will not yet have been in effect at that time. Healthcare reform’s individual mandate, as of now, commences in 2014.