ObamaCare says what it says. That’s what a three judge panel in the DC circuit court of appeals has basically said as much in a ruling today. In a two-to-one ruling, the judges said the ObamaCare subsidy doesn’t apply to people who sign up on the federal health insurance exchanges, only state exchanges because that’s what the law says.
The federal government says it will ask the full first circuit to review the case.
In the meantime, people who signed up with the federal government and qualified for subsidies, including those in the failed state plans in Oregon and Maryland, are wondering what will become of their free money.
Although the president has changed the law multiple times to suit his political aims and the IRS attempted to paper over this obvious issue, the Democrats, when they did the final cram down on ObamaCare, intended for there to be no subsidies paid at the federal level–hoping to force states to do it.
From The Hill:
A federal appeals court on Tuesday struck down one of the pillars of ObamaCare, ruling that the law’s premium subsidies are invalid in more than two-dozen states.
The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals said in a 2-1 decision that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) does not permit the IRS to distribute premium subsidies in the federal ObamaCare exchange, meaning those consumers must bear the full cost of their insurance.
“Because we conclude that the ACA unambiguously restricts the section 36B subsidy to insurance purchased on Exchanges ‘established by the State,’ we reverse the district court and vacate the IRS’s regulation,” the court said in its ruling.
As you can see by the ruling, the politically motivated IRS officials decided to take matters into their own hands and create a rule that directly circumvents the Democrats’ own intention and the words in the law. That ruling was vacated by the court.
But two hours after this ruling, another court ruled the opposite way,
… [A] separate federal appeals court panel in Richmondunanimously upheld the law and its system of subsidies and tax credits, putting it in opposition to the D.C. appeals court. That could raise the potential of a Supreme Court showdown.
“If there is a split in the circuits, then I think the Supreme Court would have to step in,” said Elizabeth Wydra, chief counsel at the liberal Constitutional Accountability Center.
As for what these decisions do to the people who are getting subsidized health care? The president’s spokesman says they’ll ignore the ruling for now,
W.H.: Ruling aside, we’re still ahead
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest comments on a court ruling that affects a key component of Obamacare.