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> King v. Burwell, Did the architect of the ACA hand Obamacare a loss?
post Nov 12 2014, 06:19 PM
Post #1

Millennium Mark

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From: Iowa
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Politics: Very Conservative
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For a summary of what King v. Burwell is all about, this does a better job of the details. The Reader's Digest version basically is that in the actual verbiage of the law, it specifically states that subsidies are for exchanges created by the states and not the federally facilitated exchanges. As you likely know, everyone that is deemed eligible regardless of the type of exchange your state is using is receiving subsidies.

The latest bump in the road for the law comes from speeches that the well known architect of the law Jonathan Gruber (Dr. Gruber's CV) gave in the run up to the launch of the exchanges. He is very clear in his answering of a very specific question in this clip. For those that want to argue context, here is the entire recording. Fast forward to 31:25 for this specific clip, but feel free to watch the entire thing to get all of his speech.

The verbiage that is being challenged can be found in the text of the law Subtitle E; Part I; Subpart A; Sec 1401; Sec 36B(b )(2) which reads: "‘(2) PREMIUM ASSISTANCE AMOUNT- The premium assistance amount determined under this subsection with respect to any coverage month is the amount equal to the lesser of--(A) the monthly premiums for such month for 1 or more qualified health plans offered in the individual market within a State which cover the taxpayer, the taxpayer’s spouse, or any dependent (as defined in section 152) of the taxpayer and which were enrolled in through an Exchange established by the State under 1311 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or" If you are curious about the relevance of 1311 as it pertains to the above quote, it can be found at SEC1311(b )(1) which reads "(1) IN GENERAL- Each State shall, not later than January 1, 2014, establish an American Health Benefit Exchange (referred to in this title as an ‘Exchange’) for the State that--"

Questions for debate:

How do you believe SCOTUS should decide this case? How do you believe they will rule?

Does the remarks of Dr. Gruber have any bearing on how SCOTUS should rule?

Does the remarks of Dr. Gruber change your view on how you would interpret the verbiage?

What are the implications of this case for the future of the law?
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