by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Juliegrace Brufke writes for the Daily Caller about a little-known provision within the Affordable Care Act that could help a future Republican president who’s determined to scrap the law.
A provision of the Affordable Care Act established to advance Obamacare could do just the opposite if a Republican is voted into the White House in the next election cycle.
Section 1332 of the law, set to take effect in 2017, would allow conservative states to to change how they implement their health care policies without a congressional vote if the executive branch approves of the plan.
Under the provision, if states provide a reasonable alternative that covers the same amount of people and doesn’t increase the deficit, requirements including the individual and employer mandate could be eliminated.
The waiver would also give states flexibility on subsides and would potentially allow them to dispose of the online exchange.
Arkansas is the first right-leaning state to consider using the measure, Politico reports.
“Our hope is that we can get flexibility with the Obama administration,” Arkansas Surgeon General Greg Bledsoe told the publication. “But if we can’t get the flexibility that we want, we believe that a Republican administration would be a lot more flexible. We think we’d have a lot more common ground.”
While section 1332 does provide some flexibility, it may not be the easy fix some conservatives are hoping for.
According to Edmund Haislmainer, a senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation, the waiver doesn’t come without its caveats.
Haislmainer said, while one may be exempt from the mandate, the need for an equivalent could drive up the cost of care.
“It would have minimal impact on bringing premiums down,” he said.