Fri June 29, 2012
Walker says he won't implement federal health care reforms
Gov. Scott Walker says the state of Wisconsin won't take any steps to implement the federal health care law, despite the U.S. Supreme Court's decision upholding it.
Walker says the lawsuit challenging the health care law was only the first step in trying to overturn it. The governor says the next step is in November, when Republicans will have a chance to elect a President and a Congress who will repeal it.
Walker says Wisconsin won't implement any part of the law until after that election. “It doesn't do a whole lot of good if after November—if you've got a new Congress and potentially a new President who will seek to make dramatic changes. You've already had one of the candidates saying his priority on day one is going to be to repeal ObamaCare. For us to put time and effort and resources into that doesn't make a whole lot of sense, and I think you're going to find a whole lot of other states like us around the country.”
Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen, who joined other Republican attorneys general in suing to overturn the law, says he won't advise the governor on how to proceed. But Van Hollen says the law spells out deadlines that the federal government will enforce eventually, “It has been upheld by the highest court in our land that this law is going to be able to proceed and move forward. And as the dictates of that law indicate the state must do things, the state is going to have to do things under those timelines.”
One of the major responsibilities for states under the law is creating health insurance exchanges where people and small businesses can use their combined purchasing power to shop for insurance. Wisconsin and other states have until 2014 to create their own exchanges or the federal government will do it for them.