Obamacare is constitutional, the United States Supreme Court rules. This is good, says Jim Duffett of the Champaign-based Campaign for Better Health Care, who cites among the law’s benefits the ban on insurance companies dropping those who have existing conditions.
“For those of us that are maybe in good health, we may not see these protections right now, but those protections are there, and I would say for millions of Illinoisans who’ve been helped by Obamacare, I heard a massive sight of relief going through the state of Illinois today,” he said. Other benefits of the law: college students staying on their parent’s policies until age 26, the closing of the “doughnut hole” in Medicare drug coverage, and small businesses being given credits to offer insurance to their employees.
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Duffett is urging the governor to issue an executive order to set up the state-based insurance exchanges that the Affordable Care Act requires by 2014. State lawmakers have not taken that step. But the Supreme Court’s affirmation is a blow to personal freedom, according to the free-market Illinois Policy Institute, which argues that Obamacare will make health care harder to access for the poor and the sick, and that employers will drop the plans they now offer.
“Over time, because it’s cheaper for employers to drop insurance, it’s gonna force people into the government-run insurance exchanges, and once you have enough people into those insurance exchanges, you’re gonna have too many patients chasing too few dollars to support it,” says chief executive John Tillman. Tillman says opponents now have only legislative channels left to sink the law.