Congratulations to Mitt Romney! His signature contribution to American life, devising a health plan that became a model for the only major Western democracy without medical care for nearly all of its citizens, has been upheld. If Romney accomplishes nothing else in life, he will go down in history as the man who first proved, in the laboratory of Massachusetts, where he once governed, that an individual mandate could work.Look, everyone knows Romney is a raw hypocrite on this issue (and, let's face it, every other one as well), and while he is now saying the Romney-based ACA should be repealed, if elected in November he will say whatever it takes then to make sure he gets reelected to a second term. (If the GOP somehow hasn't noticed, they do not have a principled man running for President.)
Jeers to Mitt Romney! As the presumptive Republican nominee for president, he stood in front of the Capitol just after the Supreme Court ruling on Thursday and promised to fight in the coming campaign against one big idea — his own.
As the ACA comes further into being, and as people everywhere now take a good look as what it really means for them, there will be too much pressure from hospitals, medical groups, and the broad middle class who have already benefited from the ACA and who will not want to see these already existing benefits disappear -- like eliminating pre-existing conditions, like insuring their kids up to the of 26, like eliminating the prescription donut hole for Medicare. Millions of people are suddenly realizing they will actually be able to purchase health insurance someday. Who is really going to try and take that cookie from the table?
As Paul Krugman wrote today in his column, "The Real Winners":
But the real winners are ordinary Americans — people like you.And this is great:
How many people are we talking about? You might say 30 million, the number of additional people the Congressional Budget Office says will have health insurance thanks to Obamacare. But that vastly understates the true number of winners because millions of other Americans — including many who oppose the act — would have been at risk of being one of those 30 million.
So add in every American who currently works for a company that offers good health insurance but is at risk of losing that job (and who isn’t in this world of outsourcing and private equity buyouts?); every American who would have found health insurance unaffordable but will now receive crucial financial help; every American with a pre-existing condition who would have been flatly denied coverage in many states.
In short, unless you belong to that tiny class of wealthy Americans who are insulated and isolated from the realities of most people’s lives, the winners from that Supreme Court decision are your friends, your relatives, the people you work with — and, very likely, you. For almost all of us stand to benefit from making America a kinder and more decent society.
But what about the cost? Put it this way: the budget office’s estimate of the cost over the next decade of Obamacare’s “coverage provisions” — basically, the subsidies needed to make insurance affordable for all — is about only a third of the cost of the tax cuts, overwhelmingly favoring the wealthy, that Mitt Romney is proposing over the same period. True, Mr. Romney says that he would offset that cost, but he has failed to provide any plausible explanation of how he’d do that. The Affordable Care Act, by contrast, is fully paid for, with an explicit combination of tax increases and spending cuts elsewhere.America continues to lurch forward, always a few decades late, but forward nonetheless, despite the best efforts of conservatives. A black president, gays in the military, courts ruling the EPA has the right to regulate greenhouse gases, same-sex marriage in ever more states, and now a good start forward toward building a health care system that is both affordable and universal. And yet somehow the Earth hasn't opened up and swallowed everyone down the throat of hell.
Makes you wonder what else might be possible, doesn't it?