Two-Thirds Of People Who Would Be Affected By Obamacare Ruling Live In …

18 Jun 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Congressional GOP plans to continue health law subsidies.

House Republicans pushed a plan Wednesday to extend Obamacare’s subsidies for the rest of the year if the Supreme Court this month says dozens of states are no longer eligible for the tax credits that have helped millions afford insurance under the law.

GOP members said the plan, outlined behind closed doors as a “work in progress,” isn’t perfect but offers a firm starting point to lead the nation away from President Obama’s signature law, should the justices strike the subsidies in at least 34 states that rely on the federal HealthCare.gov website. Republicans on both sides of the Capitol met privately to discuss how to respond to the politically explosive ruling that’s expected in the next two weeks and could result in some 7 million people losing subsidies to buy coverage under President Barack Obama’s contested health care law. A framework of a replacement plan was presented to House Republicans during a closed-door meeting Wednesday by Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan and other House leaders.

If the court rules against the White House and strikes the subsidies, Republicans say they want to be ready to protect the more than 6 million people who could lose their subsidies. Senate Republicans met earlier and said they would support legislation to continue subsidies, though they hadn’t reached a consensus on a legislative response to a ruling. After that, states could obtain block grants to continue the aid; if a state turns down the block grant, individuals could receive tax subsidies directly as they do now. The draft House plan would repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s requirements that most Americans carry insurance and most employers provide it.

Democrats are unlikely to embrace any plan that derails the health law and President Barack Obama has said that he would veto any bill that hurts his signature domestic policy achievement. The plan scraps Obamacare’s insurance mandates on individuals and employers, although the package is likely to face an impasse with President Obama and his veto pen. The Obama administration, which points to other parts of the law that make clear subsidies are meant to be available everywhere, has been providing aid in all 50 states for the last two years.

Republicans plan to frame the extension as a way to help people who would lose subsidies because of the law’s flawed construction, not as an extension of Obamacare. Sources said they may even call it a “grandfathering” of the existing subsidies. “We’re going to be prepared,” said Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah). “We wouldn’t call them subsidies. King, 64, said recently that he was reasonably confident he would prevail in his challenge to the subsidies, a central element of the Affordable Care Act.

Such an effort would be sure to encounter solid Democratic opposition and a veto from the president, who has championed the law’s extension of health coverage to millions. They’re set to push for a one-sentence fix if the justices say the law’s text restriction subsidies to states that set up their own health exchanges. Michael Carvin, the lawyer for the challengers, relies on the words “established by the state.” This is “extraordinarily straightforward,” he said. “Any English speaker would immediately understand” that no subsidies are allowed in states without their own marketplaces.

Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said that restoring the subsidies through the end of 2017 was on the table, although other sources said that no timeline had been determined. The closed-door sessions offered GOP lawmakers their most extensive talks to date on a smorgasbord of policy options, although some are reluctant to lock in Obamacare’s subsides at all, fearing it would send the wrong message after years of trying to repeal the law. Such an argument may resonate with the court’s conservatives. “Our job is to follow the text even if doing so will supposedly undercut a basic objective of the statute,” Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in a June 15 bankruptcy decision.

GOP leaders are hoping to use a court victory by conservatives challenging a key girder of Obama’s law to take the political offensive against the statute, and to avoid blame from voters should the subsidies be erased. “This is transitioning out of Obamacare, not repealing it and not even affirming it. Alternatively, people in states affected by the ruling would receive a subsidy to purchase an insurance plan either from healthcare.gov or on the open market.

Donald Verrilli pointed to other passages that say subsidies “shall be allowed” for any “applicable taxpayer” who qualifies based on his or her income. The plan was “very well thought out” and satisfied conservatives, said Representative Bill Flores, a Texas Republican who is chairman of the Republican Study Committee, a caucus of about 170 conservatives. King said, “the left will blow it out of proportion and claim that eight million people will lose their health insurance.” But he said lawyers had assured him that “things are in play to take care of the problem.” Mr. This reasoning is known as “Chevron deference,” in reference to a 1984 case in which the court backed federal regulators’ interpretation of the Clean Air Act. It’s the people who voted for this bill.” “I think it will be clear that on the one hand want to make sure that we protect anybody currently in a plan so that they’re not hurt but at the same time that we intend to end Obamacare,” said Sen.

Millions of people receive federal subsidies in the form of tax credits to help them pay premiums, and without such assistance, many would not be able to afford insurance. In 2012, the Treasury Department decided that while law was not entirely clear, the tax subsidies for health insurance should be available through any marketplace.

After the Wednesday meeting, several Republicans said that there was broad consensus for the outline of the plan but cautioned that the details will be important — and all of it could change depending on the wording of the court’s ruling. The healthcare law did not clearly tell state officials that their failure to establish their own marketplace would deprive their residents of insurance subsidies. Lawyers for 22 states raised this argument in a friend-of-the-court brief and argued it would be unfair and unconstitutional to punish their residents. But in the last few months, he said in the interview, he went to an outpatient clinic for veterans in Fredericksburg and received a veteran identification card so he could qualify for discounts at Lowe’s stores. And with a bulging population of uninsured people, hospitals and other medical providers are expected to be swamped with patients who cannot pay their bills.

During the arguments, Justice Ginsburg asked whether the plaintiffs had established that they had standing to sue: “a concrete stake” in the outcome, not just an ideological interest. Obama has cited his pen and his phone as symbols of his power to advance his agenda through executive actions, despite resistance by Republicans in Congress.

Police: Student stabbed at Baltimore high school dies

20 Jan 2016 | Author: | No comments yet »

Police Identify Student Killed In City School Stabbing.

Baltimore police spokesman T.J. The teen had been in class on the third floor of the school building in the 1300 block of McCulloh Street when a sophomore went into the classroom and stabbed him at approximately noon on Tuesday, Nov. 24, police reported. Police said Sunday that investigators are collaborating with the state’s attorney’s office to file additional charges now that the victim has died. Crawford remains in police custody, officials reported. “It’s a tragedy anytime we have someone killed in an act of violence, even moreso when it’s a child.

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