Skip to comments.What if Americans rebel against the Obamacare mandate?
Posted on 01/13/2014 12:49:46 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
The Obama administration is trying to persuade millions of uninterested, or perhaps reluctant, Americans to purchase health insurance through the Obamacare exchanges. But the heart of Obamacare is coercion. If Americans fail do what the law's Democratic authors believe is best, the federal government will punish them, through the progressively higher penalties of the individual mandate, until it hurts more not to buy coverage than it does to give up and purchase it.
But what if many of those Americans rebel? Even if they know having health insurance is better than not having it, what if they refuse to be forced to buy the kind of coverage dictated by the government -- which may not really meet their needs -- at prices they don't want to pay? What then?
"I don't think Obamacare can survive without people wanting to buy it," Robert Laszewski, the respected health care analyst whose writings on Obamacare have become essential in recent months, told me in an email exchange recently. "How the hell are you going to enforce a mandate to buy something that people don't think is valuable enough to buy? If the uninsured don't start to see value in Obamacare and buy it, is the Democratic solution to fine the heck out of them until it hurts so much they have to buy it? Great political strategy!"
Of course, that's exactly what the strategy is. Democrats designed the penalty for not having "minimum essential coverage" to start low and increase rapidly. For this year, according to a chart prepared by the Kaiser Family Foundation, the penalty is $95 per adult and $47.50 per child. But the penalty cannot rise above $285, or one percent of family income, whichever is higher. (Obamacare uses a measurement called Modified Adjusted Gross Income to determine penalties -- a measure that is usually higher than the Adjusted Gross Income many taxpayers are familiar with.)
In the second year, the penalty will rise dramatically, to $325 per adult and $162.50 per child, or two percent of family income, whichever is higher. The year after, the penalty will take another big jump, to $695 per adult and $347.50 per child, or 2.5 percent of family income. The only limit on the penalty is that it cannot be higher than the national average premium for a Bronze Plan purchased on the Obamacare exchanges. According to the Congressional Budget Office, that could be as much as $5,000 in 2016. And after that initial increase in the penalty, future penalties will rise according to the cost of living.
But Democrats in Congress feared public reaction to actually forcing Americans to write a check to the government to cover the penalty. So instead, the Internal Revenue Service, which is charged with enforcing Obamacare, will subtract the penalty from the tax refunds of those Americans who incur the penalty, provided they are due a refund. Otherwise, the IRS will not have a way to collect the money.
"In the first year, the mandate is useless," said Laszewski. "One percent isn't strong enough. The IRS can't really collect it anyway from anyone who wants to flaunt it. Then we get to the second and third year. Two percent in 2015 and 2.5 percent in 2016. Now we have real money. The IRS still can't collect it, but lots of people will still be troubled by it because they won't like getting nasty letters from the IRS."
As Laszewski sees it, the mandate could become extremely unpopular -- it's already by far the least popular part of Obamacare -- if policies are not what the public wants to buy. Who would want to be forced to buy something he or she doesn't want? That something is not insurance itself -- it is insurance that is ill-fitting and overpriced. "The problem is that the government will be hard pressed to collect a fine on something lots of people don't believe has value," Laszewski said. "This is when it will become a huge political albatross. At the core Obamacare is not sustainable, and the mandate/fine is not politically sustainable, if there are lots of middle class people who see Obamacare as a poor value."
I got in touch with Laszewski after reading an interview he did with the Washington Post's Ezra Klein in which Laszewski explained that if Obamacare had been designed by businesspeople, it might have had more features to appeal to customers. But it was designed by lawmakers and lobbyists and is something quite different. "The problem with Obamacare is its product driven and not market driven," Laszewski told Klein. "They didnt ask the customer what they wanted. And I think thats the fundamental problem with Obamacare. It meets the needs of very poor people because youre giving them health insurance for free. But it doesnt really meet the needs of healthy people and middle-class people."
Of course, the individual mandate forces people to buy coverage whether it meets their needs or not. And Laszewski sees a real possibility that it won't work. If enough dissatisfied Americans simply don't buy the product, he said, that would create political momentum "to get rid of the mandate/fine -- which is effectively the same thing as getting rid of Obamacare." And if that happens, the American health system will be in entirely uncharted territory.
The very best thing to do is to resist it no matter what they threaten to do, at the very least its patriotism.
Who knows maybe Obama will become so despondent he resigns from office....
There’s a camp for that!
The insurance companies will be sucking tailpipe if the mandates collapse.
Now if only we could make it hurt the executives who eagerly embraced Zero-care instead of the workers who didn’t have anything to do with it.
Why not file lawsuits under the fact that the Obamacare mandates are violating the civil rights of the citizenry. Citizens can get millions, the lawyers fighting this can get millions, and we can kind of eliminate this through a ‘death of a thousand cuts’ method rather than trying for outright elimination. Make it cost a lot to push this through. Sue the legislatures and sue the politicians.
Since I am immune to Obozocare I have no idea about the alternatives. There are many benefits to being an American, living offshore.
>> Now if only we could make it hurt the executives who eagerly embraced Zero-care
The Country has been victimized by an indirect but true form of fascism.
While I’d be happy to see the offenders hanging, writhing, better to first puncture that asphyxiating our liberties; i.e., vote TEA!
I don’t think that goes anywhere. A legal/litigation challenge to 0’care would have to get into a circuit court and then be appealed to the USSC, per my larval understanding of the hierarchy of the court system.
However...there is a doctrine of “impossibility” in legal procedure. This may be the only (legal-based) means of overturning 0’care; but, by the time it is proven impossible, it may well have overturned itself.
I look forward to the moment when the administration floats the idea of bailouts for the insurance companies. You know, the guys who were the evil bastards all along? But who actually wrote the bill. With the bailout provision for them. I so look forward to that moment. Boy oh boy, if that doesn’t get the libs going, there is absolutely no hope for them (or for us)
From what I read they get money form the Government (US) if they loose $$$$.
What IF??? People have been rebelling against it since before it became law...or at least I have.
Yes, Rand Paul is launching such an effort.
The question is whether the courts will even hear the case.
In the US, one needs to show “standing” (yes, this is in the Constitution), otherwise the courts will reject the case.
Although it may seem obvious to us that there is a direct harm to our personal well-being and liberty, a judge could say that the citizen has a legislative remedy.
If Paul is smart, he will continue to build public awareness of his legal effort. It may force the hand of a federal judge (or even SCOTUS) to hear the case. In the end, judges are political figures too, and are sensitive to the insinuation that their rule is not legitimate.
Yes, but if the mandates collapse, this amount will be enormous. The subsidies will be repealed too, pinching the insurance companies. The preexisting condition exclusion will then need to be repealed.
The GOP needs to have an alternative. Undoing Obamacare now would be like unscrambling an egg.
The target group will neither pay for insurance nor pay a fine.
They will just show up and demand their “rights”.
I think people are already rebelling but you’ll never get the actual numbers out of the assholes running Obamacare. This administration is nothing but one huge lie.
I’d like to see the entire GOP stand up and walk out on the state of the Union address or at least scream out “YOU DID LIE” every time POSPOTUS opens his mouth.
They do not have to let him come give the address. That's a courtesy. I'd like to see that - oh the screams of racism lol
The insurance companies will be sucking tailpipe if the mandates collapse.
The grave concern is that this fiasco will be allowed to run until it completely bankrupts and destroys the private insurance industry, leaving only substandard medicare (single payer).
I don't think "IF" is the correct word. I think "WHEN" is the correct word. . . . .
Why can’t the states do as they did in the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions in 1797 to invalidate a Federal Law?
Actually, Medicare is not single payer. Medicare recipients can purchase private Medicare Advantage plans under part C (private insurance subsidized by the federal government). They can purchase unsubsidized supplemental insurance to get a better grade of care than avaialable through standard Medicare. Finally, there is Medicare Part D, the Rx drug program, which is subsidized but is entirely a set of private insurance plans.
The closest to single payer that exists in the US is Medicaid, not Medicare. Most of the Obamacare enrollments have been in Medicaid. Yes, this was by design. Medicaid is horrible- I wouldn’t put my worst enemy on it. It is indeed a single payer system insofar as a recipient can’t supplement the benefits with private plans or cash payment out of pocket.
I don’t know if Insurance companies need be bankrupted; my impression is that they tried to jack prices higher than need be to take advantage of the coercive legislative cover Obamacare provides for their mega profit schemes. They’ll need to offer competitive pricing and moderate their deductibles in order to attract business.
Auto Insurance has coercive legislation forcing all those who own cars to have insurance but with a plethora of Insurance companies out there, the pricing has to be competitive and affordable.
“Since I am immune to Obozocare I have no idea about the alternatives. There are many benefits to being an American, living offshore”
I bet you would squeal like a pig under a gate if they toke your SS benefits away?
Just sit there and collect your bennies with your tail between your legs until they come for your stuff then you can start squeeeeeeeling.
Anything and everything Americans can do to frustrate, undermine, and foil this unconstitutional law is justifiable.
And a whole pigsty full of Justice Roberts won’t make this catastrophe Constitutional.
How about having the majority of people in the U.S. legally rebelling against President Barack Obama, his entire administration, AND the Entire Left of, both, major U.S. political parties, at each and every political level, as well as rebelling against all pro-left judges, at each and every judicial level, too?
The insurance companies will be sucking tailpipe if the mandates collapse.
Lest you think the ocean between us will save you, understand something: This push for tyranny is worldwide. You will feel the lash, too.
Calling Judge Napolitano!
We in South Carolina are working hard to nullify nobamacare.
” This push for tyranny is worldwide. You will feel the lash, too.”
Yes, but I am in my senior years. I expect to be six feet under when that day comes. At least I am not under Obumbo’s tyranny.
Still, I, along with my American neighbors, am immune to Obozocare. We have our own insurance here.
There is a group on FR that hate my guts because I am not there to share the pain. While I feel for them, I have my own life to live.
??? What have you been smokin’??? You live in Colorado???
Too many political cowards up and down the government chain from local all the way up to D.C.
Any private individual or group that files suit will have it dismissed due to lack of standing. The elites have invented the no standing procedure to prevent the little people from using the courts to over turn or nullify laws that are in the interest of the elites.
Ignore the personal attacks. There are none so blind as those who choose not to see.
With the trainwreck coming, it’s prudent to be overseas or have the legal and economic means to be there at the drop of a hat (permanent residency or dual citizenship).
(2) SPECIAL RULES- Notwithstanding any other provision of law
(A) WAIVER OF CRIMINAL PENALTIES- In the case of any failure by a taxpayer to timely pay any penalty imposed by this section, such taxpayer shall not be subject to any criminal prosecution or penalty with respect to such failure.
(B) LIMITATIONS ON LIENS AND LEVIES- The Secretary shall not
(i) file notice of lien with respect to any property of a taxpayer by reason of any failure to pay the penalty imposed by this section, or
(ii) levy on any such property with respect to such failure..
If only the government were run by the people and not the other way around.
Every time I see a younger so-called “adult” singing the praises of 0bama and 0bamacare, I make it a point of thanking them for subsidizing my health insurance. The strange part is that most of the young ignorant morons argue that they are not doing so!
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I heard on the radio that Boehner already invited him.
Right now most uninsured people are not rebelling against the law because they aren’t really aware of the law. Nobody has sent any uninsured person a bill for either insurance or the mandate. So they are going on with their lives. They haven’t needed health insurance up to this point, and if they are like most people, they won’t need it until they are old enough to get Medicare.
I’m not worried about the insurance industry collapsing, after all they participated in this attempt to destroy our country. We will just begin our own “pools” and insurance will be reborn without the creeps who attempted to destroy us.
Not I. I would be gone as well but my minor children would be compromised, so I will continue the struggle here. I am teaching them Chinese & Japanese in the hope that they develop an intellectual skill that is valued there in the manner that it used to be valued here before we became a nation of caregivers and burger flippers.
The direction of America's fate is very clear. - When the mass of world wide immigrants reaches a critical mass, then the next (communist) step will be taken to modify the constitution and its goodbye the 2nd - then the real killing begins...
Yeah, seen them before. Seen you in arguments with them.
I don't share their hatred, I feel you were prudent.
Your message on this very thread seemed like a 'tweak'. It seemed like you were strutting and (mildly) mocking. I admit to feeling a small twinge of irritation at you. That is what prompted me to write.
You might want to look at how these messages can and are being interpreted, how you are coming across, etc. Oftentimes it is not the message but the tone that makes people mad.
How does the mandate violate civil rights?
THE SUMMER OF 2014:
Today is the last watershed day for America, because it is the last chance for the US Supreme Court to exercise a Constitutional Check and Balance on the current rogue, tyrannical and oppressive Federal Administration.
Chief Justice John Traitor Roberts will probably again refuse to abide with the clear Constitutional Law, and again rewrite the US Constitution to his own liking, in similar manner to what Roberts did with the Constitutionality of the Obamacare Case when he un-Constutionally converted a legal fine into an illegal tax.
Today the US Supreme Court takes up the issue of whether or not an Administration can act without Congressional Approval on matters relating to personnel appointments.
The topic of bypassing the House on approving the spending of taxpayers dollars by the Administration will not be considered today, except tangentially, as the appointed personnel will be paid with taxpayer dollars, which would be a bypassing of the Constitutional Control of the Purse by the US House of Representatives.
We taxpayers view this as a clear cut case where we have Taxation Without Representation because our Representatives have not been part of the decision-making process.
Examples of a few Imperial matters of record include the following:
* Senator Reids Democrats recent voting to turn the US Congress into the US Parliament,
* Boehners refusal to appoint House Special Prosecutors for each of the Five Obama Administration Scandals,
* Obamas four years of Imperial actions, and
* the recent history, ( Traitor Roberts Obamacare decision), of the US Supreme Courts proven reluctance to provide their Constitutional duty of a Check and Balance on the other two Branches of the US Federal Government.
With the usual US Supreme Court private straw vote today that always follows the 30 minute Official Hearing before the Court, Americas future fate will be sealed, and later proclaimed between now and the Summer of 2014.
Either way that the NINE SUPREMES rule on this case, The Summer of 2014 will prove to be the Summer that decided whether or not our Founding Fathers fought King George the Third of England in vain - - - .
THE SUMMER OF 2014.
Concur - I harbor no ill will towards AlexW, but I do think he intentionally gloats and tweaks.
“...Who knows maybe Obama will become so despondent he resigns from office....”
Nice thought, but don’t put money on it, friend.
He’s lovin’ himself some POTUS power right now. Infatuated with it.