King v. Burwell: TCC Letter Encouraging Congress to Repeal & Replace PPACA

In the light of the King v. Burwell Supreme Court decision, please see the following letter from  the Texas Conservative Coalition encouraging members of the Texas congressional delegation to repeal and replace the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act:

July 8, 2015

U.S. House of Representatives

Washington, DC 20515

Dear Congressman:

With it being clear now from two decisions that the Supreme Court will not defend the Constitution or enforce the law as written – instead, effectively, rewriting the Affordable Care Act from the bench – focus shifts back to Congress to repeal and replace the fundamentally flawed PPACA.

The Texas Conservative Coalition (TCC) thanks you for your repeated efforts to repeal the law and urges you to continue those efforts. Important votes such as H.R. 160 (The “Protect Medical Innovation Act”), which would repeal the 2.3% medical device tax in the PPACA, must continue to take place. Repealing the tax will help keep medical devices affordable for patients, but it will also allow companies to retain important resources which may be used for R&D and innovation. H.R. 160 passed the House by a 280-140 margin—one vote shy of the votes necessary to override a presidential veto.

For its part, the Texas Legislature refuses to be complicit in the implementation of the PPACA. We remain committed to letting the law fail on its own terms by not expanding Medicaid and by not establishing a state-based exchange. These are prudent moves, as evidence against the PPACA’s efficacy and efficiency continues to mount:

  • The Washington Post recently reported that “Nearly half of the 17 insurance marketplaces set up by states and the District under President Obama’s health law are struggling financially, presenting state officials with an unexpected and serious challenge….” The article attributes some of the “surging costs” to “bulky technology” and “expensive call centers,” coupled with “tepid” enrollment numbers. These problems are leading officials in some of these states to consider raising fees on insurers, pressing lawmakers for infusions of cash to artificially buoy the system, or ceding operations to the federal government.
  • Several of the 29 states (and DC) that opted to expand Medicaid under Obamacare are experiencing ballooning enrollment numbers. Seven of those states have seen 1.4 million more enrollees than originally expected with Kentucky, Illinois, and Washington now doubling their original Medicaid enrollment projections. Kentucky recently raised taxes to address a $400 million budget shortfall; Illinois recently concluded a legislative session that left a $3 billion budget shortfall unaddressed; while Washington State’s shortfall stands at $4 billion.

Even if the PPACA worked as advertised, it would still be a dubious project of government. That the PPACA is a disaster of public policy only adds to the imperative that it be repealed. TCC urges you to continue your efforts to repeal the law, including final passage of H.R. 160.