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View Full Version : Inaurance Mandate Is Republican Policy



Gayle in MD
03-29-2010, 11:05 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"><span style='font-size: 26pt'>Though Republican lawmakers now vilify the individual mandate for health insurance coverage as unconstitutional, the provision has long roots in conservative health care philosophy and has been supported by such GOP presidents as Richard Nixon and George H.W. Bush.</span>
Republican administrations were among the first to embrace the concept of forcing individuals to buy coverage. Nixon -- hoping to stave off the single-payer ethos of many congressional Democrats -- explored the idea in the 1970s, though Republicans now dismiss those discussions as the byproduct of a moderate president searching for a domestic policy victory.

Less than two decades later, in what remains an unexplored chapter of health care history, a surprising supporter of the individual mandate was George H.W. Bush. According to contemporaneous reporting, Bush used "the tax system to 'encourage and empower' individuals to buy health insurance and would enact insurance market reforms that make it possible for everyone -- even if they have pre-existing health problems -- to get insurance." In short: individuals would be mandated to buy catastrophic health insurance. The cost of that coverage would be tied to income, meaning that the poorer you were, the less expensive your policy would be.

Coverage of Preventive Services Provisions of Selected Current Health
The idea never made it far.

"Dick Darman, who was then head of [Office of Management and Budget], was the person most intrigued by the idea and the administration did put together some kind of plan but it never got introduced in Congress, because they didn't think it would go anywhere in the Democratic Congress at the time," recalled Mark Pauly, a noted health care economist at the University of Pennsylvania. "At the time the alternative was thought to be single payer and whatever Senator Kennedy had in mind, which was more or less a single payer kind of view. Conservatives didn't support that. But they were taking the premise that everyone ought to have insurance."

As Pauly remembers history (and as has been comprehensively documented), the notion of an individual mandate was once in vogue among conservative thinkers. Following the Bush plan, the policy came to define the counter-proposal to President Clinton's health care overhaul in the early '90s. After falling off the radar for several years, it was resuscitated, philosophically by Gov. Mitt Romney in Massachusetts and then found further Republican intellectual support in the Senate in the form of a bill drafted by Sens. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Bob Bennett (R-Utah.).

<span style='font-size: 26pt'>Pauly says that it is "distressing" for the mandate to now be deemed unconstitutional by some of those same Republicans. It also seems a bit brazen. </span>
<span style='font-size: 20pt'>Take, for instance, the Heritage Foundation, which made a big splash this past year by condemning Obama's proposal as unconstitutional,</span> hosting events with Republican lawmakers and theorists who repeated that mantra.

<span style='font-size: 20pt'>Back in 1989 and then in 1993, however, the same conservative institution authored a major proposal based strongly around the individual mandate. Titled the "Consumer Choice Health Plan," the policy was actually analyzed by the Congressional Budget Office, which summarized the premise as follows:</span>
<span style='font-size: 20pt'>In order to guarantee universal health care coverage, everyone would have to obtain insurance, either through a government program or from a private insurer, on their own or through a family member. The states would be charged with enforcing the mandate and would have to arrange coverage for people who did not do so themselves. The minimum insurance would cover "catastrophic" health care expenses--that is, those exceeding $1,000 a year for an individual or $2,000 a year for a family. (Those amounts would be adjusted for inflation after 1997.)</span><span style='font-size: 20pt'>This is, in short, the basis for what Bush proposed during his administration, Romney pushed as governor, Republican senators co-sponsored with Wyden and Obama built off of for his own policy. Only with the latter did Heritage express concerns about constitutionality. </span>
Asked to explain these new legal concerns, the group's Director of U.S. Senate Relations, Brian Darling urged the Huffington Post to "speak with somebody who wrote those papers... because we have been very clear that the individual mandate is unconstitutional."

The authors of the paper promoting the individual mandate -- Stuart Butler and Edmund Haislmaier -- both remain scholars with Heritage. Reached separately by phone, they defended their work as a product of different political times, argued that their ideas were substantially different from what Obama made law (the difference between levying a tax on those who don't buy insurance and denying them subsidies) and explained that their views on the mandate have evolved.

"I came to the conclusion, I suppose maybe five or six years ago, that it really is better to go through a combination of automatic enrollment, subsidies and high risk pools where the default is you are insured," said Butler. "I'm just not real keen with laws being passed saying that you have to buy insurance... My position evolved. People change their views. I'm 62, I'm old enough to change my views."

And yet, even granting that one's views evolve over time, the fundamental question remains the same: Is requiring people to buy insurance -- which Heritage once championed and now opposes -- an illegal act? Neither Butler or Haislmaier would take the bait.

"That's not why my views changed," said Butler. "I'm a health care scholar. I'm not a constitutional lawyer."

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eg8r
03-29-2010, 12:34 PM
LOL, they flip flopped like Kerry. /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

eg8r

llotter
03-29-2010, 01:30 PM
Yes, there were some Republicans who supported the individual mandate but it is not fair to call them 'conservative'. Conservatism has found a new life lately and some Republicans are attempting to ride it but many will be challenged in primaries and lose their influence.

Conservatism, with its allegiance to 'originalism' in the Constitution, is the way out of this mess if it is not too late. That means getting the government out of areas that are not listed in Art. 1, Sec 8. Ending Social Security, healthcare, education, agriculture, a single page IRS code, and a lot more. This is the surest way to maximizing freedom and prosperity.

LWW
03-29-2010, 01:39 PM
It is amazing how many people simply cannot wrap their mind around the concept that people actually exist who aren't intellectually welded to what the party tells them to believe.

The left entirely misread the 2008 election.

They took it as the people wrapping their arms around Obama's nebulous "PLATFORM" when it was actually that many of the conservatives were nearly as repulsed by McCain as they were by dearest leader and either stayed home or voted libertarian.

LWW

Gayle in MD
03-29-2010, 01:43 PM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: llotter</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Yes, there were some Republicans who supported the individual mandate but it is not fair to call them 'conservative'. Conservatism has found a new life lately and some Republicans are attempting to ride it but many will be challenged in primaries and lose their influence.

Conservatism, with its allegiance to 'originalism' in the Constitution, is the way out of this mess if it is not too late. That means getting the government out of areas that are not listed in Art. 1, Sec 8. Ending Social Security, healthcare, education, agriculture, a single page IRS code, and a lot more. This is the surest way to maximizing freedom and prosperity. </div></div>

I'm putting you back on ignore....I don't waste my time debating with folks like you. The Constitution was written well over two hundred years ago. There were no credit default swaps, back then. The Constitution was meant oto be a living document.

There was no way to avoid a depression, without the bailouts, and without the stimulis, you wouldn't have firemen, or policemen right now in your state. Your roads wouldn't have been cleared during the snow. children would have no schools to go to.

People like you are so far out of touch, it's irritating just to know they exist...

Bye

pooltchr
03-29-2010, 02:14 PM
The principles of the constitution are every bit as valid today as they were 240 years ago. What has gone wrong is that Washington has taken every opportunity to seize power that the constitution does not grant them.

Steve

LWW
03-29-2010, 02:35 PM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Gayle in MD</div><div class="ubbcode-body">The Constitution was meant oto be a living document.

Bye </div></div>

Absolutely correct, and there is a built in provision for the case to be taken to the people to amend it to be whatever they wish it to be.

Now, when you pursue that it can be amended simply by a 5-4 vote from a gang of 9 you have decided that you want an oligarchy.

In reality, you can have a republic or tyranny. Anything besides a republic is simply another word for tyranny.

Some of us get that.

Some of us are starting to get it.

Sadly, some of us never will.

LWW

Sev
03-29-2010, 08:26 PM
HAHAHAHHAHAHH!!!!

If you cant wind a debate put your head in the sand.

Pathetic.