You Have Three Years to Understand the New Health Care Act
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was signed into law by President Barack Obama last week, but that won’t stop opponents from continuing to try to shoot it down, or at least shoot holes in it. If you have ever tried to read the provisions of the bill, you know that it is excessively lengthy and wordy, requiring patience and a certain level of commitment to read through in its entirety. Bill sponsors claim the legislation will ensure health care coverage for the 32 million Americans currently living without it, and provide more affordable access to health care. The most central provision, however, is that Americans will be required to purchase health insurance policies.
The signing of the bill has not ended the debate. In fact, it may only be the beginning. House Republicans have already begun fighting the bill, and some have suggested that the Supreme Court may overturn the bill because it violates constitutional provisions. Dave Roland, a Show-Me Institute policy analyst, has written about the potential legal pitfalls that may be faced by the requirement to purchase health insurance.
More information about the final provisions of the bill will undoubtedly become available to the public in the coming days, so that we may better grasp what exactly the bill entails. However, it may well be shot down before it is scheduled to take effect in 2014. We have three years to really understand the changes this legislation will bring.
As Harvard economics professor Jeffrey Miron pointed out at his Obamanomics lecture last week, such intense conflict could be a good thing for the American people. This butting of heads can lead to gridlock, which can help prevent either side from getting everything it wants. Taking into consideration all of the debate and conflict initiated by the bill so far, it may look completely different by the time 2014 rolls around.