By Tony Perkins
In its short existence, it seems like ObamaCare has spent more time in the courtroom than it has in the doctor’s office. Yesterday, two federal appeals courts handed down conflicting rulings as it relates to ObamaCare subsidies for those who purchase healthcare through federally-created exchanges in their state.
The D.C. Appeals Court ruled in Halbig v. Burwell that subsidies to assist individuals in purchasing healthcare, if they qualify based on their income, are only intended to be dispersed to individuals who purchase a plan on an exchange that was created by their state — not a federally created exchange in their state. On the other hand, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals also ruled yesterday afternoon, in King v. Burwell, that the income subsidies were intended and are able to be given to both individuals who purchase a plan on either a state created exchange or a federally created exchange in their state.
Given the dueling decisions this will most likely wind up before the Supreme Court in their next term.
A lot is riding on this issue. If the ruling of the D.C. Appeals Court stands, we could be seeing the beginning of the end for ObamaCare. ObamaCare has been full of empty promises, broken websites, religious liberty violations and high dollar signs and if this ruling stands, the administration will not be able to mask these very serious inherent flaws with subsidies given to those individuals whom the law strictly prohibits.
A lot of people received sticker shock when they purchased their healthcare plans on the exchanges during the last open enrollment, but the subsidies were able to mask a large portion of the cost for many. If people aren’t able to qualify for subsidies if their state has refused to create an exchange, or if their state exchange is dissolved, thousands could likely be forced to pay significantly more for their healthcare.
Between ObamaCare delays, court rulings, public outrage and broken promises, the American people are seeing first-hand the inherent flaws with this law.
Tony Perkins is president of the Washington, D.C.-based Family Research Council. He is a former member of the Louisiana legislature where he served for eight years, and he is recognized as a legislative pioneer for authoring measures like the nation’s first Covenant Marriage law.
(Via FRC’s Washington Update. Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.)
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