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Washington, DC- In the event that the Supreme Court strikes down the individual mandate in late June or early July, FreedomWorks released the following statement weighing in on the debate over what should replace the cornerstone of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act law:
FreedomWorks believes that placing a mandate for any good or service on individuals is an arrogant overreach of the federal government. Congress should instead address the main problems in health care: lack of affordability, lack of portability, and excessive federal rules and red tape.
Lawmakers should replace the unconstitutional law with full tax deductibility of health care expenses and other common-sense reform ideas, including expanding Health Savings Accounts and flex benefits, reforming state medical malpractice laws, block-granting the Medicaid program back to the states, and allowing for competition across state lines.
In a podcast recorded last Tuesday, FreedomWorks’ Vice President of Health Care Policy Dean Clancy warned that conservatives should be wary of the auto-enrollment proposal championed by former presidential candidate John McCain and currently revered by a couple of conservative think tanks in the beltway.
Coupled with universal health insurance tax credits, “auto-enrollment” would force everyone to be enrolled by the government or their employer in a health insurance plan, with a right to opt out.
Clancy commented, “The Democrats’ mandate could very easily rise from the grave in a new form, namely, the GOP idea of giving everybody a new universal health care tax credit coupled with auto-enrollment. I call it a ‘soft’ mandate, and it’s arguably as bad as the original.”
“I think the Democrats are going to seize on this idea, which will probably be presented as a Republican idea. And if we go there in the wake of the mandate falling, then I think you’ll see ObamaCare, in effect, resurrected. We cannot let that happen.”
Ideas being discussed by Democratic thinkers like MIT’s Jonathan Gruber include a new 10 percent payroll tax, a late penalty, an irrevocable opt-out, and auto-enrollment.
Clancy continued, “Democrats don’t like any of these ideas, compared to the mandate,” Clancy said. “But if pressed, they prefer the auto-enrollment, because it gets more people covered, compared to the other ideas.”
“The fundamental problem with these approaches is that they’re focused on the wrong goal. They’re focused on increasing coverage. We need to be focused on costs rather than coverage, leave individuals free to make their own choices with their doctors and loved ones. That’s free-market, patient-centered health care reform. That’s what we need to be doing.”
For more information on FreedomWorks’ efforts to repeal and replace ObamaCare, please contact Press Secretary Jackie Bodnar at Jbodnar@FreedomWorks.org.