Will the GOP’s plan to fight Obamacare in the states backfire?
By: Ezra Klein, Washington Post
Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act celebrated its third birthday last weekend. This particular anniversary was a big deal, because it was often unclear whether the law would reach it. In the first place, it was imperiled by the Supreme Court; in the second, by the Republican Party’s promise to kill it if Republicans won the White House in 2012. Over the past year, Obamacare survived both challenges, and next year it will begin its core mission of insuring tens of millions of Americans.
Republicans, however, haven’t quite given up. Their slogan, “repeal and replace,” has given way to “resist and annoy.” Unable to get rid of Obamacare, many have settled on a strategy of making it function as poorly as possible. At the national level, House Republicans have refused to appropriate funds for implementation. At the state level, most Republican governors have refused to set up insurance exchanges, and many have refused to expand Medicaid.
The question, though, is whether governors who purposefully do a very bad job implementing Obamacare will hurt the law, or just themselves and their states. Call it the California v. Texas question.