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Archive for Friday, November 19, 2010

Brownback, Roberts join legal challenge of federal health care overhaul

November 19, 2010, 10:33 a.m. Updated November 19, 2010, 10:45 a.m.

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— U.S. Sens. Sam Brownback and Pat Roberts, both Kansas Republicans, have joined a legal brief challenging the new federal health care reform bill.

The brief, signed by 32 Republican senators, was filed in the lawsuit brought by Florida and 20 other states against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Related document

Republican Senators Challenge ( .PDF )

Related document

Federal Defense of Health Care Overhaul ( .PDF )

The senators contend that the Congressionally-approved requirement that people purchase health insurance oversteps the bounds of the commerce clause in the U.S. Constitution.

"Indeed, in more than 200 years of debate as to the proper scope of the Commerce Power, the Supreme Court has never suggested that the Commerce Power allows Congress to impose affirmative obligations on passive individuals, or to punish individuals for failing to purchase a particular product," the legal brief states.

The brief further states, "Defendants would turn the Commerce Power into an impermissible federal police power."

Brownback, who is the governor-elect, has vowed to fight the federal health care bill.

But the federal government has argued that Congress has broad power to regulate interstate commerce under the commerce clause, and that the minimum coverage provision regulates conduct that has substantial effects on interstate commerce.

The penalty for not having insurance is an addition to an individual's tax liability, thus it falls within Congress' authority to levy taxes and make expenditures for the general welfare, the federal government argues.

U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson of Pensacola, Fla., will hear arguments in the case next month.

Comments

CorkyHundley 3 years, 4 months ago

Face it. There is just too many people in the country that cannot pay for themselves.

China's one male per family may work. Is it too late to give it a shot?

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ferrislives 3 years, 4 months ago

Unless you are the CEO of a health insurance company, everyone knows that the health care system does need to be reformed, regardless of your opinion on how it should be done. So I ask those opposing Obamacare, why weren't you this angry at the GOP for doing nothing on health care reform during their 8 years in power? Do you expect people to continue kicking the bucket on this?

Believe me, I'm not a fan of the most-recent legislation, but I'm hearing a lot of whining from people that refused to address this important issue for all Americans for 8 long years!

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 4 months ago

Republicans apparently don't know that it was their beloved President Theodore Roosevelt who in 1912 proposed national health insurance for all.

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 4 months ago

Health insurance dollars go to golden parachutes (In 2009 CIGNA CEO received a $73 million retirement bonus which is a ton of health care dollars that would cover 6,084 families for one year). Why are health insurance dollars being spent on golden parachutes?

It's the profiteers and/or politicians aka the special interest campaign dollar moochers that do not want single payer. Shareholders are among the moochers.

There are plenty of republicans and democrats who want government run single payer because both parties are tired of paying wayyyyy too much money. People should NOT be filing bankruptcy because they need medical care.

Insured families are filing bankruptcy as a result medical care.

A medical insurance industry pollster of many years advised the industry that the information coming back to them was that the majority of the population wants IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for ALL. A government managed system is the choice of america!

"The U.S. health care system is typically characterized as a largely private-sector system, so it may come as a surprise that more than 60% of the $2 trillion annual U.S. health care bill is paid through taxes............ according to a 2002 analysis published in Health Affairs by Harvard Medical School associate professors Steffie Woolhandler and David Himmelstein"

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jstthefacts 3 years, 4 months ago

Nota b... says "See, skippy, the entire concept of covering people with pre-existing conditions is not that they don't have access to health care, it's that they can't afford to pay for it either out-of-pocket or through a risk pool...... "

Making stuff up again. This is an out and out lie. No matter how much you pay, all insurance companies have grace periods that they will not pay for a pre-existing condition period, no matter how much you pay for it and these people couldn't get insurance period. If you change providers, even if your current provider is covering whatever condition, it will not be covered by your next provider because of their pre-existing loophole. If you loose your job or change jobs, whatever health conditions you bring with you are considered pre-existing by the insurance fraud providers. You have to pay them for a designated period of time before pre-esisting conditions will be paid for if at all. Let me repeat that for you. You have to pay(thats " you" pay not your republican neighbor) I have been subjected to this many times and that makes it very real to me. You are just talk and you think all you have to do is talk your way to any result you desire. Those of us in the real world don't have your option of just talk.

nota b...says

"See, skippy, the entire concept of covering people up to age 26 on their parents' insurance is not that they don't have access to health insurance, it's that they can't afford to pay for it on their own. ...."

It is their parents that pay for the insurance not poor ole taken advantage of nota b... Also, the parents have an option of having their kids reimburse them in some manner if they choose. Do you know the difference between your neighbors paying for their kids insurance and you paying for their kids insurance. Didn' think so. Keep on trolling

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jstthefacts 3 years, 4 months ago

"The very basic problem was never republicans having to pay for health insurance for their deadbeat neighbor (a republican lie) but rather that people who bought insurance actually got what they paid for."

  "Was there supposed to be a point in there somewhere, skippy?" says nota b....

yep, over your head. Thats why its so easy for you to be duped by your republican propaganda machines. Read the posts, skippy. Almost every one who has bought into sabotaging healthcare posts that they think they have to pay for someone else's insurance. An important lie for the pubs to get you to buy into it. One you ,by making comments like above, try to pretend you didn't buy into. You did, you know it, you post it and you pretend .

"You can post all you want about what the republicans proposed or didn't. The real issue is when it came time to do something about it they opposed it for their own political purposes. Ive commented on the republicans proposal that required everyone to buy insurance and now they lie that into Obama's idea. They now use their own proposal as their main attack strategy. Lies, propaganda, whatever you like to call it , the facts are still the same.

nota b... says "We" being the operative word there, skip. Because since you don't seem to up on current events, but the Democrats passed that mess all by themselves. But hey, keep those blinders firmly affixed, and keep blaming the Republicans. Even a one-trick pony has some limited entertainment value."

You prove my point with this comment. Keep reveling in the republicans accomplishment to sabotage health care reform.

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jstthefacts 3 years, 4 months ago

Continuing their "just say no to the american people" party, our new gov and old "fall in line and obey your party leaders" senator are out to undermine the very people who voted for them. An anomaly or just ignorance. Well, enter the repubican propaganda machine, fox, koch bros, crossroads,orielly,limpbaugh, and on and on and on and the willingness to lie at any moment, the ability to instill fear and judgement by emotion instead of intelligence (own best interest) and we have idiots opposing their own interests.

As if the pubs opposition didn't sabotage the much needed health care reform, they continue to undermine the american people because now they have to finish off the health care reform before people figure out they are lying about it. The people will actually like it once they get beyond the lies.

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Flap Doodle 3 years, 4 months ago

Search on "Improved Medicare Insurance for All" + merrill = 347 results. Give it a rest, bub.

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finance 3 years, 4 months ago

It's all idle amusement--sparring in this meaningless venue that changes nothing but which adds due silliness to the inane chatter of the nation--such venues' only true service is to tease out the ignorance and bigotry and selfish evil that lurks deep in this society. And perhaps that's enough.

But in summary, let's see if I now get it any better (having been chastised by notajayhawk for my torpidity). So here's how it goes, according to this collection of right-wing haranguers who've weighed in throughout the above thread: life will finally be good again if we abolish Medicare, Medicaid, mandated health insurance, Americans with Disabilities Act requirements, etc.: virtually all (perhaps literally all) government involvement in social collectivity and--yes--even social justice, which, when the definition is "government forcing some social correction", would include all anti-discrimination laws such as equal protection and even anti-slavery laws. All on the basis that it constrains free markets and reduces competition and drives up costs (don't forget the silently mouthed afterwords which inaudibly breathe "drives up costs for me who can afford it"). And the new currency is chickens and gold? Sounds far-fetched? Well, just tote up the arguments offered by haranguers above, subtract out a dose of conscience that heretofore has tempered social conversation, and add a splash of Kobach and Brownback and all those ilk, and voila--not far-fetched any longer at all. All you free market types--you can probably take a cue here that there's new money to be made in mass-marketing brown shirts. I'd guess you can sell many, many boatloads of the new national attire.

Have a nice day.

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notajayhawk 3 years, 4 months ago

'Finally, you tax-and-spenders have breached the right-wing fog poisoning my feeble brain. Now I truly "get" it: if Obama and his lowbrow ilk can successfully enforce health insurance for everyone and return us to a better life (raw socialism), then we will miraculously have healthy people all-around (not sure of how that kind of Bidenesque thingie actually plays out factually, but leaving aside linearity here). Then (now linearity does enter in), we'll no longer have any disease-ridden corpses to catapult onto the immaculate lawns of the little socialist fiefdoms, and all will be well in heart, mind, body, and soul.'

There, fixed that for ya'.

Hope you noticed the emphasis-added in the second sentence. There is nothing in Obamacare about "health care for all", just health insurance for all. It's not going to change the health care system, except perhaps to make it worse and remove the incentive for people like you to do anything about it, since now you'll have someone else paying your way.

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finance 3 years, 4 months ago

Eureka! Finally, you anti-taxers have breached the leftist fog poisoning my feeble brain. Now I truly "get" it: if Brownback and his lowbrow ilk can successfully repeal health care for everyone and return us to a better life (raw capitalism), then we will miraculously have healthy people all-around (not sure of how that kind of Palinesque thingie actually plays out factually, but leaving aside linearity here). Then (now linearity does enter in), we'll no longer have any disease-ridden corpses to catapult onto the immaculate lawns of the little capitalist fiefdoms, and all will be well in heart, mind, body, and soul. No, wait! It gets better (see how I'm learning to think "right"-minded?). Again in the Church of Linearity, we will have produced perfectly healthy bodies to feed to the War Machine--ingenious! So, we can send healthy poor people to purposely die somewhere else instead of having sick poor people die inconveniently in our own yard. If only I had seen the heavenly light sooner. I'd apologize for my outrageous lack of insight (the old me, not the newly reborn me), but I'd probably only sound as maudlin and inhumane as the anti-taxers. I can hardly wait for my tax cut and my new social blinders (government-supplied, of course).

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 4 months ago

Brownback and Roberts want to take us back to the other even more expensive system. These guys are not experts they are politicians who accept money from the medical insurance industry!!!

This is the source for their talking points as well. Yes they go directly to the people who give them money and those who stand to make large profits. Usually this is known as unethical conflicts of interest. Of course the medical insurance industry is billing their clients for this reckless use of medical insurance dollars aka special interest campaign money. This is also known as increasing the cost of medical insurance.

Does the industry ever stop shelling out special interest campaign health insurance dollars or handing our golden parachutes? NO of course not!

Now if IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for ALL had millions upon millions upon millions to influence elected officials my guess is today all would have practical and way less IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for ALL.

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witchfindergeneral 3 years, 4 months ago

I must commend the bravery of senators Brownback and Roberts. Finally, someone is standing up for my right to die of a preventable disease and the rights of those poor, poor insurance agencies to deny me coverage because of my history of acne (I wouldn't insure me either--I'm a walking time bomb!).

The bill in question certainly isn't perfect, but it's a good start. It's absurd that here in America, a bastion of freedom and prosperity (ahem), our representatives have decided that funding billion-dollar-a-day wars with exponential defense spending (i.e., the administration of death and destruction) is more desirable and palatable than basic healthcare services for all citizens.

How does that (grammatically incorrect) Lee Greenwood song go again? "I'm proud to be an American, Where at least I know I'm free [to die of an easy preventive disease based on wholly arbitrary and frankly evil insurance policies which GOP senators would love to reinstate]..."

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notajayhawk 3 years, 4 months ago

Wonder where merrill is? He's usually all over these threads posting his usual cut-and-paste dishonest propaganda.

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Centerville 3 years, 4 months ago

Let's reduce health care costs by getting rid of HHS. Why? Because the HHS does not provide health care. But they are a whopping expense. And most taxpayers do not spend what is paid out annually to support this bureaucracy.

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 4 months ago

Let's reduce health care costs by getting rid of the medical insurance industry. Why? Because the medical insurance industry does not provide health care. But they are a whopping expense. And most consumers do not spend what is paid out annually per policy.

The United States spends twice as much as other industrialized nations on healthcare – $8160 per capita – yet performs poorly in comparison and leaves over 46 million people without health coverage and millions more inadequately covered.

Expanded and Improved Medicare Insurance for All is one of the solutions.

  • Easy to Implement: Medicare has been in existence since 1966, it provides healthcare to those 65 and older, and satisfaction levels are high. The structure is already in place and can be easily expanded to cover everyone.

  • Simple: One entity – established by the government – would handle billing and payment at a cost significantly lower than private insurance companies. Private insurance companies spend about 31% of every healthcare dollar on administration. Medicare now spends about 3%.

  • Real Choice: An expanded and improved Medicare for All would provide personal choice of doctors and other healthcare providers. While financing would be public, providers would remain private. As with Medicare, you choose your doctor, your hospital, and other healthcare providers.

  • State and Local Tax Relief: Medicare for All would assume the costs of healthcare delivery, thus relieving the states and local governments of the cost of healthcare, including Medicaid, and as a result reduce State and local tax burdens.

  • Expanded coverage: Would cover all medically necessary healthcare services – no more rationing by private insurance companies. There would be no limits on coverage, no co-pays or deductibles, and services would include not only primary and specialized care but also prescription drugs, dental, vision, mental health services, and long-term care.

  • Everyone In, Nobody Out: Everyone would be eligible and covered. No longer would doctors ask what insurance you have before they treat you.

  • No More Overpriced Private Health Insurance: Medicare for All would eliminate the need for private health insurance companies who put profit before healthcare, unfairly limit choice, restrict who gets coverage, and force people into bankruptcy.

  • Lower Costs: Most people will pay significantly less for healthcare. Savings will be achieved in reduced administrative costs and in negotiated prices for prescription drugs.

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Richard Heckler 3 years, 4 months ago

Brownback and Roberts want to take us back to the other even more expensive system. These guys are not experts they are politicians who accept money from the medical insurance industry.

You know the industry that increases the cost of medical insurance by way of high dollar reckless spending on:

Throwing more our our hard earned tax dollars at the medical insurance industry is nothing more than fraud against consumers.

"The U.S. health care system is typically characterized as a largely private-sector system, so it may come as a surprise that more than 60% of the $2 trillion annual U.S. health care bill is paid through taxes, according to a 2002 analysis published in Health Affairs by Harvard Medical School associate professors Steffie Woolhandler and David Himmelstein. "

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Centerville 3 years, 4 months ago

I'm glad they're on board. I wonder why they waited until the after election? They, more than most, know what an expensive mess Sebileus makes of things.

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finance 3 years, 4 months ago

To all you feudalists: take comfort--it will all work out, I'm sure. We'll simply reinvent the catapults and use them to lob countless disease-ridden bodies over the walls of YOUR little fiefdoms--oh, those would be the rotting corpses of the ones who died due to lack of public-supported health care. Shouldn't be a shortage of catapult fodder once you "freedom from financial oppression" people get your way. And think how much cleaner the streets will be--the smell might be bad, though.

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notajayhawk 3 years, 4 months ago

I really don't understand how all the supporters of the insurance mandate can keep pointing to the commerce clause. Forcing people to buy a product is not regulating commerce, it's creating it. The fact that the commerce clause gives the government the authority to regulate the shipment of freight by truck across state lines does NOT mean they can tell me that a package I want to send to California has to be shipped by truck.

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meggers 3 years, 4 months ago

I don't consider having my tax money used for roads, schools, libraries, fire departments, police, etc. "robbery". I consider the health of the general public as much of a necessity as those things, not only to minimize the spread of disease and contagion, but because I want to live in a humane and civilized society.

From a societal perspective, the loss of our collective humanity is far more consequential than the monetary sacrifice required to ensure that all of our nation's citizens have a right to access health care.

It really boils down to the type of society you wish to live in. I prefer to live in a society that values the lives of all of its citizens, even if it costs me a little bit more to do so.

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meggers 3 years, 4 months ago

Correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't folks eligible for Medicare required to accept it, along with the deductibles and co-payments associated with it? Many have another private insurer that serves as primary insurance, so they pay their deductibles and such to that insurer, but if they did not have that insurance, they would still be subject to the Medicare requirements.

This battle was fought long ago, and the winner was society at large. I suspect that will be the case this time, as well, despite the fact that many are attempting to capitalize in it politically. If the legislators wasting our tax money challenging the law would agree to give up their own government-subsidized health care coverage and go buy their own on the private market that they so favor, perhaps we could begin to take them seriously.

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edjayhawk 3 years, 4 months ago

It was approved. Get over it.

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Mike Ford 3 years, 4 months ago

so much wisdom from Bonner Springs....nevermind the fascists at Fox... how can a republican go to D.C. to work for a government you want to dismantle? why not give the clowns their states to run like PTA meetings? articles of confederation anyone?

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Tom Shewmon 3 years, 4 months ago

Bye-bye ObamaCare. Soon Nazi Pewlosi will be a disturbing afterthought.

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Mike Ford 3 years, 4 months ago

Firstly, as an Indian, I can quote the Commerce Clause of the US Constitution, otherwise known as article one, section eight, part three verbatim. Congress shall regulate the commerce between the foreign nations, the several states, and the Indian tribes. What is health care? commerce, What is the supremacy clause? the power of the federal government over the states. What are US States and federally recognized Indian tribes to the US Government? dependant sovereigns upon the US Government for protection. What kind of money wasting hypocrites are these lawsuit filing republicans? big ones. What does all of this bs sound like? states rights bs. By the way, I belong to a state recognized tribe so I do not get BIA or IHS healthcare, so that is immaterial to this arguement. And lastly, Mr Roberts is the clown who misinterpreted aboriginal title in the City of Sherrill New York V Oneida Indian Nation case by using the aboriginal land laws of Alaska and misapplying them to New York State to do away with 200 years ofl land claim lawsuits caused by violations of the Indian Non-Intercourse Act of 1790 and the illegal seizing of hundreds of thousands of acres in NY State. His advice to Ruth Bader Ginsberg after working on the Venetie Case in Alaska in 1989 was the cause for that miscarriage of justice. I wonder if the dumblicans will employ the very trial lawyers that they give so much grief to in stump speeches. Hypocracy at it's highest thanks to the dumb constituency of this country.

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poto63 3 years, 4 months ago

"I for one am getting tired of people" ... spouting talking points with little or no indication that they are thinking for themselves.

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bobberboy 3 years, 4 months ago

hey poor folks - brownback and roberts are going to take your health care away - and give that money to the insurance companies - cause they need it to take their trips to the bahamas. now don't you wish you had gotten out and voted ?

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countrygirl 3 years, 4 months ago

I for one am getting tired of people screaming that the healthcare reform needs to be repealed but they don't offer any other suggestions on how they think healthcare reform should be handled. The system is a mess--so just how do you suggest we fix it?

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olddognewtrix 3 years, 4 months ago

Brownback and Roberts are political lemmings running over the cliff to spite Obama with their sucideal manuevers.

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kubacker 3 years, 4 months ago

The FL federal judge will find important parts of the Obamacare unconstitutional and because that law has no severability clause to save the other parts of the law the whole 2,000 page Obomination will become invalid and void.

Further, the Obama people will appeal and after the case passes through the Court of Appeals the FL judge's ruling will be upheld by the Roberts controlled U.S. Supreme Court, no matter what the Court of Appeals says, period, end of story - it is only a matter of time.

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nomorebush 3 years, 4 months ago

They should all drop their unlimited health care and try life with none.5.000 $ ER or 100$ walk in clinic.witch would cost us taxpayers less?

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