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Repealing ObamaCare - Here's How...

Michelangelo: "You Just Chip Away Everything That Doesn’t Look Like David" 

Image result for michelangelo davidOr so the story goes, Michelangelo answered when asked how he sculpted the iconic statue of David. OK, so it might not be true - the point is still valid, and it offers insight on how to repeal ObamaCare. In other words...

"You Just Chip Away Everything That Isn't a Good HealthCare Plan"

This is a fairly simple concept. The fact is that ObamaCare, is part of the current system, and unlike Democrats, Republicans should realize that incremental, rather than comprehensive reform is preferred. The most practical and politically expedient way to "repeal" ObamaCare is to incrementally remove the most egregious aspects first, and only after removing as much of "the bad" as possible, make an assessment if what remains of the law.

Step 1. Repeal "The Individual Mandate" - This is a no brainer. This was always the most unpopular aspect of ObamaCare, and the most brazenly unconstitutional. More importantly, it really doesn't work. If the GOP wanted to score some additional political points, they could retroactively cancel all the IRS penalties and interest charges assessed over the past two years. The "Individual Mandate" was the basis of the Constitutional challenge to ObamaCare.

It was widely believed that to defeat the "Individual Mandate" was tantamount to repeal. This should be done as a regular order bill - NOT a reconciliation bill. Make Democrats defend the mandate and the tax. A large number of those penalized are recipients of EITC and are stunned to find out their annual EITC stipend is so low due to an ObamaCare penalty.  

Step 2. Repeal "The Employer Mandate" - Even if one accepts this as a well intentioned aspect of ObamaCare; it's impact has been a disaster. Employers have twisted themselves into pretzels to avoid the thresholds requiring compliance. This has caused lay-offs and reliance on part-time rather than full time workers.

Step 3. Repeal Coverage Mandates - The "Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum"  aspects of ObamaCare are an affront to freedom and capitalism and an insult to individual intelligence. This aspect of ObamaCare essentially designs all health care plans and requires all insurance companies to offer exactly the same thing. This destroys all incentive to devise a creatively structured plans to meet the varied needs of individuals. Several "coverages" would rarely be purchased by most individuals. Most Mormons wouldn't buy coverage for alcohol treatment, and most single guys wouldn't buy pregnancy coverage. Mandated "Coverages" are certainly a leading cost driver of health insurance.

Step 4. Repeal (or revise) "EMTALA" - Passed in 1986, this is perhaps the most abused legislation in history. This is the "Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act" which was based on the concept voiced by Donald Trump during his campaign that "we won't have people bleeding to death in the streets." This law was presented as a basic humanitarian requirement that hospitals could not refuse seriously injured people based on ability to pay. It has since morphed into a general grant of "everything to everyone" regardless of means to pay. This law, as much as any other law has been a cost driver in the medical industry.

There are obviously many other aspects of ObamaCare that could be "chipped away" incrementally before beginning to build back to create a better framework of laws to govern health care insurance.

Once the law is significantly stripped of its worst features, it would be worthwhile to consider allowing the site to continue as a portal for individual health care products offered by qualified carriers. The government should qualify policies only for financial solvency, and allow them to be valid in any State. This would be a way of removing the "lines around the States."

Doing all of the above, would reduce disruption in the marketplace, and set in motion the market forces required to make healthcare coverage affordable and accessible - for those who want it.

Of course, that means it's pretty sure it won't happen.