US Senator Mike Rounds’ Weekly Column: King v. Burwell Ruling Doesn’t Change the Fact that the ACA is Fatally Flawed

RoundsPressHeaderKing v. Burwell Ruling Doesn’t Change the Fact that the ACA is Fatally Flawed
By Senator Mike Rounds
June 26, 2015

MikeRounds official SenateOn June 25, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) federal subsidies are legal. Ruling in the case of King v. Burwell in a 6-3 vote, the Court sided with the administration finding the subsidies 6.4 million people currently receive do not depend on where they live, under the president’s health care law.  With this ruling, the administration has dodged another bullet. The Supreme Court once again interpreted the law in a way that favors the administration. We continue to be stuck with the ACA’s ever rising health insurance costs and the damage it is doing to our economy. This is the second major case in which the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the ACA, underscoring the need to elect a Republican president in 2016 in order to repeal and replace this fatally flawed law.

From increased insurance costs to website malfunctions and canceled coverage for millions, the ACA has hurt our economy and millions of American families. At least 4.7 million Americans lost the health care plans they enjoyed, and the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says that the law will reduce employment by 2.5 million in the next decade. This is in part because the ACA is not designed to incentivize growth. Employers are reluctant to expand and hire more employees because they could be subject to more costly mandates under the law. Lower income individuals are likely to stay in their income brackets to keep their health benefits instead of going for a promotion at work. These are only a couple examples of how the ACA discourages economic growth.

In South Dakota, there have been 18 ACA-compliant plans requesting double-digit premium rate increases in 2016. One insurance company in South Dakota is proposing premium increases of 43 percent.  Part of the reason for the rate increases are the new “one-size-fits-all” requirements forcing plans to cover unneeded benefits. One mother of three, who lives in Northeast South Dakota recently wrote to me after being notified that her out-of-pocket health insurance cost for herself and her children was increasing from $450 a month to more than $1,700. She spent hours exhausting all her options for obtaining new insurance, sifting through; yet she got nowhere under Obamacare. Her children are now faced with completely losing their health insurance at the end of the month. This is just one more example of the law failing American families.

Americans deserve a health care solution that is patient-centered, effective and accountable with a strong, vibrant marketplace to provide this freedom and choice. The ACA fails to achieve any of these goals. It also removes choice and innovation from the market, which is the most powerful tool to lower costs and better address everyone’s unique healthcare needs.

Republicans in Congress will not be deterred by the Court’s decision. South Dakotans deserve better. I will continue to work with my colleagues in the Senate to repeal and replace this flawed, government-run health care plan. Our goal is to secure, affordable services in a competitive market for all Americans.


12 thoughts on “US Senator Mike Rounds’ Weekly Column: King v. Burwell Ruling Doesn’t Change the Fact that the ACA is Fatally Flawed”

  1. Someone who propsed and implemented Obamacare should not be saying that the law he supported is flawed.

    1. you’re referring to sb38 / sb43 of course. the dept of human services and the offices which became the dept of labor & regulation brought these heavy bills forward as a way of controlling and interacting with the thousands of pages of the federal law in a.c.a in light of the state’s existing insurance structure. it’s too simplistic to say these bills ‘implemented’ obamacare, they actually exerted control over how obamacare was going to interfere with insurance in the state whether anyone lifted a finger to ‘implement’ or not. and it’s too simplistict to simply say that then-governor rounds ‘implemented’ obamacare because 1. the bureaucrats and insurance lobby wrote the bills and 2. the legislature approved the bills. democrats have been incensed every session since sb38-43 over the fact that obamacare HAS NOT been implemented in the state, in terms of the state insurance exchange, and little temporary goodies which would come to the state if they take on the unfunded mandate of paying the full load of medicare.
      republicans’ point in bringing the a-c-a lawsuit is that THE LAW doesn’t provide a dependable exemption from the clause forcing higher premium rates in states without a state insurance exchange – – that temporary “adjustment” was handed out to the fed-exchange states strictly at the whim and discretion of the internal revenue service, overseeing the tax credit program. voters and taxpayers ARE NOT protected from any future unilateral termination of the “adjustement” made by i-r-s to the affordable care act outside the wording of the. republicans have made little or no effort to explain this clearly, and are still trying to stand on the generic long-standing argument for full repeal. why they don’t try to fight where the battle is, i do not know. all they are doing is playing into a narrow view of the the facts, i.e. democrats can charge the republicans with hypocrisy, simultaneously wanting repeal AND full implementation that specifically will CAUSE the high rates that they keep scaring everyone with.
      at the end of the day, senator rounds is correct. a-c-a is flawed, and if republicans can actually plan and execute a battle strategy, they can win it. but not if they stick to the old worn arguments which always resonate in the arch-conservative camp.

      1. republicans now need to pass a bill that deletes the rate-calculation for federal exchange states from a-c-a altogether, on the basis that the i.r.s. already has ignored it. pass it stand-alone as quickly as possible and race it to the president and see if he REALLY wants a clearly worded law. THAT would be a campaign point. no, senator, the supco decision helped republicans dodge a bullet too, all things considered.

  2. I think everybody who advocates for a single payer system should be allowed to enroll in VA healthcare with no option of getting care anywhere else, and see how they like it

    1. The VA was very good to my Father. No complaints as long as the Vets don’t have to travel to a VA Hospital.

    2. see, here’s what i was talking about a few posts above, this is where state democrats want the state to take on the huge burden of expanding who is covered by medicare, and taking the huge expense of that as an annual ongoing burden on the state budget in exchange for federal money that helps pay the extra cost for a little while. the state has said ‘no’ to that for obvious reasons. yet a blithe attitude toward busted budgets persists.

  3. There is a reason insurance in South Dakota exceeds all of the surrounding states–the Rounds Administration.

    1. so it isn’t because of the last decade or two of companies not being able to sell across state lines, and the inability of states to set up larger multi-state high risk pools because of federal law?? coupled with the fact of south dakota’s relatively small size?? ok, its all rounds’ fault. sure. yeah. because of him the state insurance regulators were never able to set the lowest possible rates even with the state’s problems in engaging in cost sharing and cost savings.

  4. Single payer–Obamacare-VA based–medicare based—big question with all of these plans–how are we going to pay for any of them??? We are broke! 18 trillion and rising.

    1. And if you consider the unfunded liabilities the actual debt is much, much, much higher. But hey, who cares, just use some of Obama’s “stash” to pay for all these.

  5. I think Senator Rounds should just send the flaws to SCOTUS. With a stroke of the pen they can just fix it since it wasn’t the intent for it to be unworkable. Why pretend the legislative branch means anything?

    “I pledge allegiance to the Supreme Court of the United States.”

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