Posted on 17 April 2012.
March 28, 2012
By Michael Master
The Supreme Court hearings about Obamacare had many fascinating moments. It is trying to determine if mandatory purchase of insurance is “necessary and proper” as defined in the Constitution.
One moment that stands out to me is when Kagan asked if tax credits could be used to motivate people to buy healthcare insurance rather than having to mandate purchase of insurance.
Another one was when Scalia asked if there are other methods to provide healthcare to people who can not afford to pay for it. If there are other methods, then why is it “necessary and proper” for the government to force people to buy insurance?
And my favorite was when Kennedy asked if the penalty for not purchasing insurance is a tax or not a tax. The government argued that it was not a tax to get the legislation passed and is now arguing that it is a tax so the penalty is constitutional according to the 16th Amendment.
Tax credits (as in my book, Rules for Conservatives): Let’s say that the government allows you to deduct your out-of-pocket expenses to purchase health insurance up to $2,000 per dependent from your tax obligation if you provide the actual insurance receipts. Are you going to purchase insurance? Of course. You will at least purchase catastrophic insurance. As a young person under the age of 35, catastrophic insurance will probably cost less than $1500 per year.
Let’s assume that you pay no income taxes, so then the government will return to you what you paid out-of- pocket for insurance up to $2000 per dependent. A family of 4 could get an $8,000 rebate. Would you at least buy catastrophic insurance? Of course you would.
No government mandate would be needed to make people buy insurance. It would increase taxes some to cover these credits, but not anything close to the $2.4 trillion that is now projected as the cost for Obamacare for the next 10 years.
Other methods of providing healthcare: Does everyone need insurance in order to provide healthcare to those who cannot afford it? Of course not. SChips and other government programs assured healthcare providers that they would get paid. As Scalia said, Obamacare just shifts who is writing the check from the government to the insurance companies, but the tax payers are still paying for it.
Is the penalty for not purchasing insurance a tax? The Democrats argued that it is not a tax when they fought to get the legislation passed and now they argue that it is a tax to make it constitutional. So is it a tax or not? And if you pay the penalty, then you still don’t have insurance, so what is accomplished by the penalty? One thing that we know for sure from this is that this administration will say anything to get its way … depending on the audience. It cannot be trusted.
If there are other methods to pay for healthcare or to motivate people to purchase insurance, then how can the current government claim that mandating the purchase of insurance is the only way to provide healthcare … that it is “necessary and proper” to provide healthcare to Americans?
In my mind, they lied to us to get legislation passed to reward the insurance industry. How many Americans realize that insurance industry lobbyists wrote the actual Obamacare legislation?
As stated in an op ed written by me for World Net Daily two years ago, Insurance Companies are the winners with ObamaCare:
As the insurance companies complain about the healthcare insurance bill, Democrats have written a bill that benefits those insurance companies. It mandates that all Americans must purchase insurance so it provides more young profitable customers to the insurance companies. It allows the government to reduce benefits so the insurance companies make more profit. It regulates fees paid to hospitals and doctors so the government acts as the negotiator for the insurance cartel.
….. Congress is about to pass a bill of 2700 pages that will forever change the nature of healthcare in America without really understanding what is in the bill. And Obama is labeling opposition to ObamaCare as being against healthcare reform.
According to statistics maintained by the Center for Responsive Politics….
1. The top three Senate recipients for insurance industry contributions — all Democrats — are Sens. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., Chris Dodd, D-Conn., and Harry Reid, D-Nev., according to the center’s research. And in the House, it’s another trio of Democrats: Reps. Melissa Bean, D-Ill., Earl Pomeroy, D-N.D., and Barney Frank, D-Mass.
2. According to the Wall Street Journal of April 30, 2007, Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer received a combined total of $2.4 million from the insurance companies.
3. The Washington Post of July 21, 2009 states “Chairman Baucus (D-Mont.) has emerged as a leading recipient of Senate campaign contributions from the hospitals, insurers and other medical interest groups … Health-related companies and their employees gave Baucus’s political committees nearly $1.5 million in 2007 and 2008.”
4. The Center for Responsive Politics shows that President Obama received a staggering $20,175,303 from the healthcare industry during the 2008 election cycle, nearly three times the amount of his presidential rival John McCain.
Just like in the “Song of the South” when the rabbit says to the bear, “Don’t throw me in that briar patch,” the insurance companies are saying don’t pass this bill … but they really want it. Otherwise, why would these Democrats be pushing it when they get so much money from insurance companies?
If for some crazy reason, the Supreme Court finds that mandating the purchase of insurance is “necessary and proper” to provide healthcare to Americans, then we taxpaying Americans need to do everything “necessary and proper” to get it repealed so we can implement other alternatives.
Michael Master is the author of “Save America Now!” and “Rules for Conservatives” which can be ordered at www.saveamericanow.us.com