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Is Obamacare a Disaster for the Economy? Yes!

Is Obamacare a Disaster for the Economy? Yes!


Over the past few months, President Barack Obama's healthcare law has been subjected to three devastating blows. First was the electoral repudiation of the Democrats in November 2010, based in large part on Obama's overreach when it came to both his political mandate and the boundaries of the Constitution. Second was the political repudiation of the new law by the newly Republican-dominated House of Representatives, which voted 245-189 in January to repeal the bill--a margin 49 votes greater than that of the original vote to pass it (followed by a close, but failed, Senate vote). The third repudiation came from the federal judiciary, and in two stages that sandwiched the House vote. Stage one was the ruling by Judge Henry Hudson of Virginia in December; the second was the ruling by Judge Roger Vinson of Florida in late January. Both held that there is no constitutional basis for the legislative imposition of a mandate that would require every American to purchase a health-care policy. This paper discusses how Obamacare (PPACA) is a disaster for the economy.


The electoral repudiation was a shock to the political system; it sent the message that, when it comes to far-reaching overhauls of America, voters prefer consensus and discussion to single-party legislative impositions. This nationwide repudiation was not surprising in the least to anyone outside the White House or the previous congressional leadership. Portents of electoral disaster had begun appearing on the political horizon more than a year before the 2010 elections. Gubernatorial triumphs for Republican candidates in New Jersey and Virginia in 2009 should have given the Obama team at least an inkling of the unrest it would be facing over its political tactics and policies. Nevertheless, those who chose to whistle past the electoral graveyard argued that both New Jersey and Virginia had had Republican governors before and shook off the 2009 election defeats as not particularly noteworthy. (Olson 2010)

It was the Scott Brown election in January 2010 that first signaled to the White House, and the rest of the political establishment, that something unprecedented was going on. Brown's victory, in which a Republican in Massachusetts won the seat that had belonged to liberal lion Ted Kennedy, not only flummoxed the administration politically, but also put them on a dangerous policy and procedural path. For Brown had explicitly run as an opponent of the health-care bill on a promise that he would deny Democrats the sixtieth vote they would need to overcome a Republican filibuster in the Senate against the bill. Without that all-important sixtieth vote, Democrats were no longer able to jam through their initiative in a strictly partisan way, as they they could do in the majority-run House. (Ariz 2010)

What this meant was that Democrats would ultimately have to resort to a strategy that would require the Senate and then the House to pass bills with the exact same language, thus vitiating the appointment of ...
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