I am not an attorney, and I don’t even play one on TV, so I do not want to venture onto the likely outcome of the Supreme Court challenge against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka PPACA, or ACA, or Obamacare). If pressed, I would note that those who argue that the Court has for many decades not been kind to legal challenges based on the commerce clause of the Constitution seem persuasive. But that may be yet another rule that always is true, until it is not.
However, also on the table is the legislative repeal of the ACA – either in whole (“repeal and replace”) or in part (as in House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s recently proposed budget resolution for fiscal year 2013). Neither of these approaches is going anywhere in 2012, with the Senate and the White House controlled by Democrats. However, both options could be live next year, depending on the outcome of the November elections.
CED recommended a “no” vote on the ACA when it came to the end of the process, because we believed that it did too little to contain health costs. However, it is worth noting briefly that the partial repeal of the ACA in the House budget resolution (it apparently would eliminate all of the provisions that spend money, but retain all of the law’s budgetary offsets) would scrap the law’s saving grace, which we highlighted throughout.