Fri June 29, 2012
Wis. Dems pleased with Affordable Care Act ruling
The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld much of the healthcare reform law championed by the Obama Administration. Backers of the sweeping bill here in Wisconsin are praising the ruling.
Supporters and critics, from hospital administrators to the uninsured, have been waiting for the ruling. So have the politicians who will have to live with the outcome... at least for now. Thursday, the high court upheld much of the Affordable Care Act -- including the individual mandate -- which will help pay for insuring more people. Wisconsin Rep. Ron Kind, a vocal supporter of the bill, says if it was struck down it would have been a return to the status quo, “We know what that would have brought. Higher costs for all Americans, businesses large and small less able to compete globally because of rising healthcare costs, more Americans going uninsured in our society and the public deficits continuing to explode at every level.”
Gov. Scott Walker says he will wait to act on healthcare reform until after the November elections. That will complicate efforts to create a state-based online marketplace where people can compare private insurance plans. Democratic state Sen. Jon Erpenbach of Middleton says the governor should reconsider his position on health insurance exchanges, “Make no mistake about it. Wisconsin will have an exchange, either by the people of Wisconsin or by the federal government. That will be up to Gov. Walker”
The high court did strike down the provision that penalizes states that do not expand Medicaid. The ruling gives states a bit more leeway in how they carry out the federal government’s wishes. With Gov. Walker and the GOP-lead state Assembly strongly opposed to the law as a whole, it may take months to see what healthcare reform will actually look like in Wisconsin.