Texas vs Azar : stay calm

The district Court decision in the trolling lawsuit Texas vs HHS is out. The district Court judge just decided to toss several centuries of precedent.

This decision will be slapped around on appeal.

Keep on signing up. This will get quickly stayed and the judge will get bench-slapped.

update 1one of the conservative legal minds behind King v Burwell<\i> has this comment

update 2






54 replies
  1. 1
    Corner Stone says:

    Welp, that’s just fucking great.

  2. 2
    PatrickG says:

    stay calm

    I may require several fresh towels*.

    * Yes, yes, I know it’s Don’t Panic.

  3. 3
    dnfree says:

    Thank you for highlighting this and for urging calm. With all the judges being seated under Trump/McConnell, including some rated as unqualified, how long can we expect higher-level courts to act with any semblance of rationality?

  4. 4
    Felanius Kootea says:

    Why stop with the ACA? I’m surprised the judge didn’t rule that getting sick is a criminal offence
    and anyone who needs insurance should be sentenced to death.

    Lunatics in high places. But this may be what kills the GOP in the end. Not the racism, which the
    base loves, but attacking something that their base actually needs.

  5. 5
    Corner Stone says:

    Keep on signing up. This will get quickly stayed

    While I am sure that is true, it’s still damaging to the underlying program/system. And, IMO, is going to lead to people getting hurt.

  6. 6

    I thought the Supreme Court found otherwise. But we live in evil times.

  7. 7
    Davis X. Machina says:

    Did the judge invoke the time-honored jurisprudential principle of “whatever that colored boy did is unconstitutional”?

    Or was it the equally venerable “We were doing fine with social provision — y’all had access to care, guaranteed, plus housing and food — until y’all passed that Thirteenth Amendment”?

  8. 8
    trollhattan says:

    Well she-yutt, took just enuf law to understand “INSEVERABLE.”

    Nothing but good things come from Texas. Not like Trump’s beloved 9th District, nosir. I hope John Roberts had a lovely dinner.

  9. 9
    Bobby Thomson says:

    Wait. Don’t panic because the Trump administration could implement the ACA without being in contempt? As if the administration wouldn’t seize on any excuse not to implement it?

  10. 10
    SenyorDave says:

    Here’s the judge’s Wikipedia page, he sounds like a real piece of work:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reed_Charles_O%27Connor

  11. 11
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Forget it, Jake . It’s Texass.

  12. 12
    jl says:

    One political argument in favor of some version or other of single payer (Medicare for all is the current top flavor) is that it gets rid of this nonsense. That is a political argument in favor of going in the direction of Congress raising them some tax money and spending it. I think harder to challenge.
    Between 30 and 35 middle and high income countries manage to get better or comparable population health for far less proportion of GDP spent on health care. And there are almost 30 different ways of financing it, from ‘Oamacare done right’ (IMHO, Switzerland) to a Medicare-for-all program (best example is Australia). Surprisingly or maybe not, both of those countries look very similar in outcomes and expenditure, even if financing systems are very different.

    So, Go Swiss, or Go Australia, you damned kids! There will have to be massive disruption to corporate profit interests no matter which direction we take. The US population is sick and tired of being taken to the cleaners on their health care. I would prefer to Go Swiss. That system would provide more work for health economists (which DA will agree with me is a great point in its advantage, I am sure!). But I can see why many are getting frustrated and just say let the damn government collect the insurance premiums and then pay out the claims.

  13. 13
    SenyorDave says:

    Just surprised he didn’t wait until Christmas day to issue the ruling.

  14. 14
    Hob says:

    @Bobby Thomson: They don’t need to “seize on any excuse.” That is, if they were going to just not comply with the law, and cite an excuse that just amounts to “some random judge agrees with us”, they could have done that already. Instead, for what it’s worth, they have been working within the existing legal system. And the point is that this decision does not change the current state of the law at a federal level.

  15. 15
    Platonailedit says:

    Texans – we so love our shitsammiches.

  16. 16
    trollhattan says:

    @SenyorDave:
    The gift that was George W Bush keeps giving, and this asshat is young. This could be a bat signal to the WH for a USOC nomination.

    He replaced A. Joe Fish. Must be fun going through life with people always asking, “Got any aces?”

  17. 17
    Adam L Silverman says:

    What gets me is that the original individual mandate requiring that Americans have some form of health insurance was issued by the Madison Administration. It pertained to sailors who were returning to port in the US with a variety of illnesses and the costs for their care was becoming a serious issue. So a mandate was created that required them to purchase insurance for medical coverage. I’m pretty sure if Madison thought this was constitutional, then it was constitutional.

  18. 18
    noncarborundum says:

    I’m really not a big fan of this timeline.

  19. 19
    chris says:

    @jl:

    Between 30 and 35 middle and high income countries manage to get better or comparable population health for far less proportion of GDP spent on health care.

    Yep. From 2012 but still relevant. The US spends over 100% of the OECD average

  20. 20
    Snarki, child of Loki says:

    All those BOLDED ALL-CAPS declarations are proof of legal rectitude and sanity, amirite?

    Needz moar “UNaltered DISSEMINATION is ENCOURAGED” also, too.

  21. 21
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @jl:

    One political argument in favor of some version or other of single payer (Medicare for all is the current top flavor) is that it gets rid of this nonsense.

    How? Wingnut judges would just rule that single payer is unconstitutional for some equally absurd reason, possibly involving tax=slavery and gold flag fringe.

  22. 22

    Best ACA lawsuit explainer I've seen is from @sarahkliff. Screamy headlines are… fun, I guess, but ACA reporters, like GOP AGs, knew O'Connor would rule this way. Ruling itself doesn't halt ACA. Higher courts expected to laugh this out of existence. https://t.co/bvv098d1k5— Dave Weigel (@daveweigel) December 15, 2018

  23. 23

    @jl:

    One political argument in favor of some version or other of single payer (Medicare for all is the current top flavor) is that it gets rid of this nonsense. That is a political argument in favor of going in the direction of Congress raising them some tax money and spending it. I think harder to challenge.

    Part of this is the flip side of PPACA being written to be minimally disruptive to the way insurance was provided to people who had it. Because it left the whole employer sponsored insurance business, Medicare, and legacy Medicaid alone, repealing it would still leave us with a functional system- if you consider the pre-ACA system to have been functional, that is. Non-disruptive to implement means non-disruptive to repeal or overturn. In contrast, a single payer system would be very disruptive to implement, but that disruption would mean there wasn’t a functional old system to fall back on if it were repealed or overturned. That would make any attempt to get rid of it much more difficult.

  24. 24
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)  🗳🌷 says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    How? Wingnut judges would just rule that single payer is unconstitutional for some equally absurd reason, possibly involving tax=slavery and gold flag fringe.

    Well, you could just simply ignore their rulings if they’re that ridiculous…

  25. 25

    @Adam L Silverman: What did Madison know about the Constitution? Except the writing it part.

  26. 26
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: The first Federal mandate issued in the US was by President Washington and it was a regulation requiring every able bodied male serving in their local militias to maintain a certain type of long gun and a certain amount of shot, powder, and wadding at a certain level of functionality in case the militia had to be mustered.

  27. 27
    eric says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: I am pretty sure Madison lost Marbury v Madison.

  28. 28
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @eric: But only on points. And the score card of that one judge from New Jersey is always way out of line compared to the other two judges.

  29. 29
    boatboy_srq says:

    @Felanius Kootea: The equal presumption (weren’t we just discussing privilege and its consequent components a little bit ago?), especially true for the US, is that health insurance is a benefit of gainful employment by an employer who offers health insurance as a benefit, for a benefit is worth participation, and in an employment status that allows such participation and that anyone without said health insurance is the same kind of lazy layabout Grifter of the Entitlements that were fodder for Young Bucks and T-Bones, the Welfare Moms in Cadillacs and other myths of Reaganism. Ensuring health insurance for those who are neither already on Medicaid nor purchasing their full-price pre-ACA Unobtainium Plan policies is wasteful coddling of a soft populace according to this mindset.

  30. 30
    boatboy_srq says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Voiding that would also void the VA, would it not?

  31. 31
    boatboy_srq says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: That was pre-Gorsuch and pre-Kavanaugh. This is an entirely new SCOTUS. I’d be surprised if the current crew found the Fifteenth Amendment Constitutional.

  32. 32
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @boatboy_srq: I don’t think the legislation that established the VA is based on that mandate from the Madison administration.

  33. 33
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Duane: How about you knock off the death threats. Judge O’Connor made a bad ruling. That appears to be his thing. Hyperbolic threats that he’s a “dead man” aren’t appropriate. If you want to threaten people take it elsewhere. I’m deleting your comment too.

  34. 34

    Well, I hope you are right that this will be overturned on appeal, but having watched the sheer amount of crazy that is lose in this country, I am not confident that you are. The Roberts Court seems hell-bent on becoming the worst since the Taney Court.

  35. 35
    Geoboy says:

    @Raven Onthill: Oh, I think they’ll outdo the Taney Court before they’er stopped.

  36. 36
    satby says:

    Well, I was procrastinating because I hate plowing through selecting all the plans so I finished it tonight. Got a decent plan for a bit less than I was paying this year. I never go to the doctor unless I’m at death’s door anyway, but I joined an HMO this time and figure I’ll actually go get all those shingle shots everyone says I should.
    Assuming we do have the ACA after Jan 1 anyway.

  37. 37
  38. 38
    boatboy_srq says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Most likely not, but voiding the ACA in this manner could extend to voiding the VA as well, I think.

  39. 39
    Redshift says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Non-disruptive to implement means non-disruptive to repeal or overturn. In contrast, a single payer system would be very disruptive to implement, but that disruption would mean there wasn’t a functional old system to fall back on if it were repealed or overturned. That would make any attempt to get rid of it much more difficult.

    That seems like wishful thinking to me. First off, non-disruptive to implement through a long rollout with time to adapt for components that aren’t directly altered (like companies providing employer health plans) does not mean equally non-disruptive if the whole thing is trashed overnight by a court decision. Second, conservatives and centrists have privatized complex government functions even when it was a really bad idea. Since wingnuts think anything government-run is inherently evil and the free market is always better, I don’t see them being particularly hesitant to put out a call for bidders.

    There are obviously good reasons to move to a less patchwork system, but I’m not convinced by this one.

  40. 40
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @boatboy_srq: That’s a question for Anderson, it is well outside of my ability to answer.

  41. 41
    Rommie says:

    I won’t Panic (unless the Coffee runs out) but relying on CJ Roberts to continue his support is unwanted excitement. The right price can bury his shame over running a Taney II court, and I’ll always worry someone(s) will pay it. It’s a Well I’d rather not go to for water too many times.

    Maybe this decision is so far out that CJ Roberts isn’t the swing vote anyway. Maybe.

    Like others have said, I hate this timeline.

  42. 42
    Captain C says:

    @Raven Onthill: He’s the Dred Scott Roberts.

  43. 43
    Just Chuck says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Could we start applying the same treatment to VDE’s constant ongoing murder fantasies?

  44. 44
    peej01 says:

    One more year til I’m eligible for Medicare. Then I’ll have something other than Obamacare to worry about. I signed up last week and my plan is cheaper than last year’s. Thanks, Maryland.

  45. 45
    Citizen Alan says:

    @eric:

    I am pretty sure Madison lost Marbury v Madison.

    Um, no.

  46. 46
    stinger says:

    To be fair, in the run-up to passage of the PPACA we were repeatedly assured by Democratic leaders that the individual mandate was the 3rd leg of a three-legged stool, a sine qua non. Which would seem pretty inseverable.

  47. 47
    jl says:

    @Matt McIrvin: Congressional power to tax and spend is clearer, Government can enforce rules against corporate price gouging with regulations that avoid industry bargaining and lawsuits claiming restraint of trade. Medicare is already here, and can just lower minimum age by a few years and gradually cover everyone.

    Sure, there will still be lawsuits, but will be much harder for them to prevail, without courts striking them down, or public and political, and electoral, firestorm that will force legislation. Imagine the reaction to a court case that rules big chunks of Medicare unconstitutional.

    Edit: if it were up to me, I’d ‘Go Swiss’ with a more heavily regulated Obamacare. But insurance and medical provider corporate interests have been so greedy in doing everything and anything they can to water down health care reform to keep their fat profits, the public is on the verge of getting so disgusted we’ll get Meciare for all and the corporations will get zip. Medicare for all will work OK if it comes to that.

  48. 48
    janesays says:

    @boatboy_srq: Roberts sided with the 4 liberals @boatboy_srq: Roberts was on that court and sided with the liberals.

    Assuming Roberts maintains his previous position, the good guys still have a 5-4 majority on this one.

  49. 49
    Jay Noble says:

    @Adam L Silverman: But that was the almighty Second Amendment! (Just don’t say it too loud with all that “well regulated Militia” stuff floating around there).

  50. 50
    Kent says:

    So, if anyone is still reading this thread. Legal Question regarding the Obamacare lawsuits.

    It seems that Scott Walker has signed the legislation that restricts the new Governor of WI from withdrawing from the states Obamacare lawsuit. I got to wondering. How much could a malicious State Attorney General completely fuck up a lawsuit by doing all the wrong stuff procedurally or what not. In other words, if the state legislature refuses to let the state withdraw from the lawsuit, can the state go in and completely torpedo the case by filing motions that cripple or conflict with what the other states are doing?

    I have no idea about legal procedures in these sorts of cases. But it is something that occurred to me. That would really be poetic justice if WI managed to completely mangle up the case on purpose because they couldn’t withdraw.

  51. 51
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @Kent: don’t know the specifics, but it’s worth keeping mind is this purpose of this stuff is to pown liberals, not do anything policy wise.

  52. 52
    Kent says:

    @Enhanced Voting Techniques:

    I don’t know either. But if I was an attorney general in that position, the first thing I think I’d do is file all kinds of evidence documents and motions that completely conflict and undermine what the other state attorney generals are doing. Do every malicious thing possible to undermine the case and get it tossed out.

    Politics is politics right? It’s like football. You can do a lot more damage to your own team by remaining on the field and screwing things up intentionally than you can standing on the sideline. I just wonder if the legal profession is similar.

  53. 53
    boatboy_srq says:

    @janesays: So, Roberts is the new Kennedy? That’s terrifying in its way.

  54. 54
    ken says:

    I’ll make the case for not staying calm. Trump, who is NOT a stable genius, could reverse course and decide for whatever reason to follow the ruling and stop paying APTCs to insurers who then cancel policies and stop payments for services provided to people with expanded Medicaid. Mobilize; write letters to your reps, federal and state. Do not assume it will be OK.

Comments are closed.