June 29, 2012
NYC Letter: A River In Egypt -- Team Barry On Obamacare
Day 1,252 of CHOPE
D-minus 204 Days
Mr. Obama signed Obamacare into law March 23, 2010 and he and the Democrats collectively crossed their fingers. Nobody knew what the law actually was -- what was in it or what wasn't. Nobody had read it. The only thing certain about the law was that it was unpopular (and this), and it would be challenged in the courts, which it was.
Obamacare bounced around in the courts (and here) till Team Barry decided it was better to know than not know what the BFD was and sooner was better than later. Obamacare jumped ahead to the Supreme Court for review. The SCOTUS justices heard oral arguments in March (and here), then huddled for three months, and finally Thursday ruled on the unpopular and controversial law.
SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS
OBAMACARE INDIVIDUAL MANDATE
AS A TAX
June 28, 2012 (ABC News)
Though SCOTUS upheld constitutionality of healthcare mandate under tax law, WH says today the penalty for not buying insurance is not a tax.— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) June 29, 2012
At a briefing on Air Force One, spksmn Jay Carney said "it's not a tax...it's a penalty" over which people have a choice.— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) June 29, 2012
June 29, 2012 (ABC News) - The White House argued on Friday that the individual mandate at the heart of Obamacare is a penalty, not a tax, contradicting the Supreme Court's 5-4 ruling a day earlier upholding the historic health care law. But if it is a tax, blame Mitt Romney, spokesman Jay Carney suggested. Mr. Carney:It's a penalty, because you have a choice. You don't have a choice to pay your taxes, right?
Not even trying. Not even trying because Team Barry in the person of Mr. Carney believes you are this stupid. [Pause.] The Obamacare penalty is assessed for not doing what the government has demanded of you. You do have a choice to not pay your taxes and the government assesses you a penalty for that too, usually confiscation of all your worldly goods and jail time.
In any case, Carney said, the penalty "is modeled exactly on the penalty that exists in the health care reform that was promoted and signed into law by Governor Romney in Massachusetts."
Which has no relevance, which never made an appearance in the SCOTUS ruling. Team Barry wants to own Obamacare but not its Constitutional legitimation. Mr. Romney owns the tax and Team Barry owns the happy newly insured.
"You can call it what you want," Carney said, underlining Congressional Budget Office estimates that whatever you call it will affect only 1 percent of Americans. "It is not a broad-based tax."
So it is a tax.
"One percent of the population. One percent. You can call it what you want, but it is affecting 1 percent of the population. Because most people either have health insurance or people do the responsible thing and if they can afford health insurance they will purchase it," the spokesman said. "For those who can afford health insurance, but choose to remain uninsured, forcing the rest of us to pay for their care, a penalty is administered," Carney said.
The pique of victory.Posted by Damian at June 29, 2012 11:45 PM