WASHINGTON — Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), along with 29 of his Senate colleagues, introduced a bill Monday that will prevent Americans from being victimized again by Obamacare if the Supreme Court follows the law and rules against the Obama administration this summer in King v. Burwell.
Senator Johnson’s bill is named “Preserving Freedom and Choice in Health Care” and it would do just that. Millions of Americans lost their health care because of Obamacare’s mandates. Those individuals, together with millions more, would suffer again if the court rules that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act prevents subsidies from being paid through federal exchanges. Such a ruling is consistent with the law, but it would leave those Americans unable to pay for expensive Obamacare coverage that is affordable only when it is subsidized by hardworking taxpayers.
“This bill is a first step toward reversing the damage that Obamacare has inflicted on the American health care system,” said Senator Johnson. “It begins to replace Obamacare’s expensive mess with patient-focused, market-based reforms.”
To protect patients, the bill combines Senator Johnson’s “If You Like Your Health Plan, You Can Keep It Act” with a restoration of freedom that Obamacare takes away. Individuals would be able to keep any health care plan and subsidy they currently have until August 2017. They would also have the freedom to purchase (or not to purchase) any new insurance plan the free market offers. The bill stops the IRS from imposing penalties (taxes) on law-abiding Americans who choose not to buy costly government-designed health plans by eliminating the individual mandate. It would also end the shifting of countless, perhaps millions, of Americans into part-time work by ending the employer mandate. Finally, it would help control the cost of health insurance by repealing Obamacare’s costly mandated coverages and turning insurance decisions back over to individuals and the states. “My bill allows Americans to reclaim some of the freedom that Obamacare took away,” said Senator Johnson.
“I am grateful to my Republican colleagues who chose to cosponsor this important legislation,” said Senator Johnson. “We recognize that if the Supreme Court rules the administration’s implementation of Obamacare is unlawful, President Obama will cynically propose yet another patch to this unworkable law. We need to be ready with real reform.”
“This bill is a transitional response that rescues Americans from the coercive nature of Obamacare, which is an unnecessarily complicated scheme that should not be resuscitated,” said Senator Johnson. “This bill lives up to its name by restoring freedom. If you want to keep your health care plan, you can keep it. If you want to escape Obamacare, this sets you free.”