by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Arrivederci, sayonara, good-bye, we hardly knew ya. Is there anybody currently breathing who actually understands the details of Obamacare? Nancy “You Have to Pass It in Order to Understand It” Pelosi certainly didn’t and I doubt she does now, even as she presumably ascends once more to speaker of the House.
Maybe Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel — the putative architect of the ACA — does, but he was about as intelligible as a Martian speaking Sanskrit when trying to explain it on television. (Giving Emanuel his due, he’s said some pretty interesting things about the obsolescence of hospitals lately.)
Actually, the legislation was the kludge of kludges, the Rube Goldberg machine of Rube Goldberg machines. Neither unfettered free market, nor socialist single payer, it was nothing. Just an inscrutable headache. (Of course, some say that was deliberate. It was built to fail so that it could be replaced by single-payer. But they didn’t think a judge would disallow it.)
The only part of this legislation people seemed to like — in fact, the only part they seem to remember, if you listen to the talking heads — was the requirement to insure those with pre-existing conditions (cancer, heart disease, etc.).
This one aspect of the ACA remains crucial and is considered just by a large percentage of the population. Republicans would be well-advised to move on preserving this requirement immediately and find a way to codify it with new legislation. Yes, this judicial decision was a surprising turn of events, but that should be the impetus to act more quickly, even during the lame-duck session.