The death of Obamacare?

The socialist project to create government control of health care took a hit this year when Obamacare, the Affordable Care Act (an excellent example of misnomers that socialist use), was declared unconstitutional by Reed O'Connor, federal district judge in Fort Worth, Texas, in the case of Texas v. Azar.  Now we can hope the 5th Circuit in New Orleans and the Supreme Court will let Judge O'Connor's decision stand.

Judge Reed O'Connor.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the 1944 State of the Union address announced that in a prosperous America, "[w]e cannot be content, no matter how high that general standard of living may be, if some fraction of our people — whether it be one-third or one-fifth or one-tenth — is ill-fed, ill-clothed, ill-housed, and insecure."  Outlining his plan to fulfill a Second (economic) Bill of Rights — the economic right to comfort, free from want or insecurity, an assurance of a government guarantee of good income, housing, medical care, education, even good recreation.

How nice that FDR had such ambitious utopian plans, but is it possible he was more interested in government expansion and control than in the necessitous citizen?  Is socialism really about removing want or making the government all-powerful?  Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act was pushed through with some serious resistance in 2012, and the architect of the gigantic takeover, Jonathan Gruber, a Harvard elite and dedicated leftist, declared that Obamacare tricked a stupid American public.

So what was the consequence of the trick?  A bunch of lies and broken "promises" that were listed by Congressman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) when he responded on July 10 to the Democrat assertions that President Trump was trying to undermine Obamacare.  "How can you undermine something that's already failed?" Rep. Jordan asked.

Matt Margolis in an article in PJ Media on July 11 laid out Jordan's nine lies of Obamacare and added some that Jordon neglected.  Here is a sample: keep your doctor?  No.  Keep your plan?  No.  Reduced premiums?  Nope, went up.  Deductibles will go down?  Double nope, went up a lot.  Website efficient and secure?  You kiddin'?  Co-ops would be great?  They all went bankrupt and left a lot of bills unpaid.

There are plenty of other lies and broken promises — for examples, the law was not created in an open forum, it was secretly concocted and pushed through.  The law funded abortions after promising it would not, and the kicker: it didn't eliminate the uninsured, supposedly the most important reason for passing the law.  In fact, more people couldn't afford health insurance because of the price hikes after the law was passed, the uninsured numbers, and cost-price burdens made health insurance a burden for those with limited incomes, but even for those with good incomes, premiums skyrocketed under Obamacare.  Obamacare broke the promises and liars promoted it.  Obamacare didn't work except to create a heavier burden for health insurance and it increased Medicaid rolls by expanding eligibility parameters.

Judge O'Connor may end the debacle with his opinion in Texas v. Azar.  On July 9, the 5th Federal Circuit Review Panel closely questioned the parties in the case and the attitude of the panel was judged to be in league with Judge O'Connor's conclusion that all of the Affordable Care Act was unconstitutional due to the removal of the "penalty" that the Supreme Court Opinion in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius 567 U.S. 519 (2012) said was lawful and constitutional because it was a tax and the Congress had the power to tax even if it did not have the power to tell people what to buy.

The challenge to ACA constitutionality is pursued by Texas and 17 other states.  The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has refused to defend the ACA's constitutionality.  The plaintiff  states argue that people were left with an unconstitutional command to buy a product they did not want and since a mandate was an essential part of the law, it cannot stand.

The author is president elect of the Texas chapter of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, which filed an amicus brief supporting the plaintiff position that the law can no longer stand without a "tax" or penalty to create the mandate, but also raising a Tenth Amendment argument about how the ACA denies Americans the choice of buying affordable insurance.  The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) is a national organization representing physicians in all specialties, founded in 1943.  Its motto is "omnia pro aegroto," or "all for the patient."

John Dale Dunn, M.D., J.D. is an emergency and corrections physician, former managed care organization CEO, and inactive attorney in Brownwood, Texas.