Republicans are pulling out all the stops in the attempt to gut Obamacare, now that they hold two of three branches of government, and may be set to take a third. Unfortunately, as is often the case with the pet causes of ideologues who don’t get their way, the situation with the Affordable Care Act and GOP attempts to destroy it is drifting squarely into the realm of the ridiculous.
For a shining example, we need look no further than Representative Steve King (R-IA). Congressman King is proud to be among the many Republicans willing to do whatever it takes to remove healthcare for millions of Americans, and he’s got some laughably ridiculous ideas as to how he might accomplish this. Mr. King introduced a measure on Tuesday which will ban the Supreme Court from citing past Obamacare cases as part of future judgments. The bill goes as far as to name four major GOP suits that failed in their attempt to overturn the controversial law, and prevents them “from citation for the purpose of precedence in all future cases.” In a press release where he announced his plan, Rep. King said,
‘It was my first order of business on the morning after ObamaCare passed into law, March 24, 2010, to draft and introduce my full, 100% repeal of ObamaCare. By prohibiting the Supreme Court from citing ObamaCare cases, we will be truly eradicating this unconstitutional policy from all three branches of government so that the repeal will be complete.’
King’s measure cites Article 3, Section 2 of the US Constitution, which states that Congress is allowed “to provide exceptions and regulations for Supreme Court consideration of cases and controversies.”
One might surmise that King’s grasp on constitutional law is a bit murky. In fact, Rep. King doesn’t hold a law degree and is a college dropout who ran an earth moving company before being elected to public office in 1996.
Washington University health law expert Timothy Jost, like most men whose area of expertise is challenged by an amateur, reacted with a chuckle.
Jost told Winning Democrats that King “obviously hasn’t read these opinions,” as they “contained very strong statements about state rights,” including religious liberty. He elaborated, saying:
‘These are three precedents that one would think Representative King would affirm very strongly.’
Ignorant GOP members are so rabid to destroy healthcare for millions of Americans that they’ve been throwing themselves at any possible avenue of attack, whether it makes sense or not. They seem to want to club the ACA into the ground so badly that they’ve completely lost control of their weapon, and it’s only a matter of time before it rebounds back into their faces.
That’s because under the ACA, the number of uninsured in this country plummeted, from 18% in late 2013 to 11.4% in early 2015. That reversed a trend that had been climbing up aggressively since 2008.
What’s more, should the GOP be successful in repealing Obamacare, millions of Americans would lose their health insurance in the process. And a lot of those folks live in places that voted enthusiastically for Trump and his ilk in the last election. Although those people may have been effectively convinced to vote for people who don’t have their interests at heart, they may change their tune once the bottom drops out of their healthcare coverage. What’s more, the GOP agenda seems bent on victimizing the poorest in the country further, going after SNAP benefits and Medicare. If it wasn’t for conservative talk radio and Fox News, the revolution might have already happened.
Featured image courtesy of Scott Olson on Getty Images. All rights reserved. Image has been modified from its original form.