Saturday, June 30, 2012

VVA Applauds the Supreme Court for Upholding the Affordable Care Act






Voice of Vietnamese Americans applauds the Supreme Court's decision in upholding the Affordable Care Act on June 28, 2012. This ensures hard-working, middle class families will get the security they deserve and protects every American from the worst insurance company abuses.

Here’s what today’s ruling means for the middle class:

o Insurance companies no longer have unchecked power to cancel your policy, deny you coverage, or charge women more than men.
o Soon, no American will ever again be denied care or charged more due to a pre-existing condition, like cancer or even asthma.


o Preventive care will still be covered free of charge by insurance companies--including mammograms for women and wellness visits for seniors.


o By August, millions of Americans will receive a rebate because their insurance company spent too much of their premium on administrative costs or CEO bonuses.


o Many seniors will continue to save $600 a year on their prescription drugs.


o Efforts to strengthen and protect Medicare by cracking down on waste, fraud, and abuse will remain in place.


o Millions of young adults will still be able to stay on their family's plan until they're 26.

· The Court has issued a clear and final ruling on this law. The last thing Congress should do is refight old political battles and start over on health care by repealing basic protections that provide security for the middle class. Right now, Congress needs to work together to focus on the economy and creating jobs.

 · A major impact of the Court's decision is the 129 million people with pre-existing conditions and millions of middle class families who will have the security of affordable health coverage.

· Under today’s ruling, having health insurance is and will continue to be a choice. · If you can’t afford insurance or you’re a small business that wants to provide affordable insurance to your employees, you’ll get tax credits that make coverage affordable. · But if you can afford insurance and you choose not to purchase it, the taxpayers will no longer subsidize your care for free.

· Rather than refighting old political battles by repealing health benefits and protections for the middle class, Congress should act on the President’s concrete plans to create an economy built to last by reducing the deficit in a balanced way and investing in education, clean energy, innovation, and infrastructure. It’s time for folks in Washington to work together on behalf of the American people.

The Security of Affordable Coverage – Benefits & Protections By the Numbers:·

$10.7 billion has been recovered by cracking down on waste, fraud, and abuse in Medicare all while securing and protecting the benefits seniors have earned.·

86 million Americans have benefitted from free preventive services like mammograms for women or wellness visits for seniors.·

17 million children with pre-existing conditions can no longer be denied coverage.·

12.8 million Americans will benefit from rebates because their insurance company spent too much of their premium dollars on administrative costs or CEO bonuses. ·

6.6 million young adults have the security of coverage until age 26.·

5.3 million Americans on Medicare have saved an average of $600 on their prescription drugs.·

70,000 Americans with pre-existing conditions now have the security of coverage.



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News from CSPAN:
 
Supreme Court Upholds Health Care Law

Washington, DC

Thursday, June 28, 2012
The Supreme Court announced, Thursday, that the entire Affordable Care Act is upheld. They did issue some limits on the Medicaid portion of the bill. Chief Justice John Roberts appears to be the crucial fifth vote. This is the final case of the 2011 term.

The Court upheld the individual mandate, deeming it a tax. From the decision: "Our precedent demonstrates that Congress had the power to impose the exaction in Section 5000A under the taxing power, and that Section 5000A need not be read to do more than impose a tax. This is sufficient to sustain it."

Regarding the Medicaid portion of the act, the opinion held the expansion of the low-income health insurance constitutional, but said that the federal government couldn't withhold funds for the program from states that don't comply with federal provisions.

Chief Justice Roberts wrote in his opinion, "nothing in our opinion precludes Congress from offering funds under the ACA to expand the availability of health care, and requiring that states accepting such funds comply with the conditions on their use. What Congress is not free to do is to penalize States that choose not to participate in that new program by taking away their existing Medicaid funding.

Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) speaking on the Senate floor after the opinion was read, said "our Supreme Court has spoken, the matter is settled."

In a written statement, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) said the House would schedule a vote for repeal the week of July 9th, "clearing the way for patient-centered reforms that lower costs and increase choice." He later said it would likely be on Wednesday, July 11.

Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney spoke to reporters from Washington, D.C., vowing to "repeal and replace" the law. He laid out some of the provisions that he would seek to put into a replacement bill, including lowering costs for everyone and leaving the pre-existing condition clause in place.
President Obama spoke from the White House in what was billed as an "address to the nation," saying "whatever the politics, today's decision was a victory for people all over this country." He highlighted the provisions of the act that have already taken affect and the benefits they provide. He spoke about the health insurance marketplaces that the act will create, and noted that insurance companies can no longer discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions.

In March, the U.S. Supreme Court held three days of oral arguments on the multi-state lawsuit challenging the health care law. On March 26, 27 and 28 the Court Justices sat for a combined six hours to determine the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The case is officially known as Florida v. Department of Health & Human Services.

The court heard arguments on four issues related to the case: whether the court has jurisdiction over a tax law that has yet to take effect, whether the individual mandate is constitutional, whether the court can strike down only part of the law without striking down the law in its entirety, and whether the law's extension of Medicaid is constitutional.

Because the court upheld the individual mandate, they did not need to address severability.
In addition to the health care ruling, decisions on the following two cases are being handed down:
In U.S. v. Alvarez, which deals with a federal law that criminalizes false statements about military honors, the law was struck down as unconstitutional.

In First American Financial Corporation v. Edwards, a real estate case that asks whether a buyer has the right to sue if he was steered toward a certain title company due to a kickback, the case was dismissed.

Source: C-SPAN
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