If the government loses in a major Obamacare challenge before the Supreme Court, it will result in premium increases of up to 700 percent for nearly 8 million people, a new analysis claims.
The analysis from think tank Avalere Health was released Thursday as the Obama administration continues to take heat from Congress for having no backup plan in case the Supreme Court ruling in King v. Burwell doesn’t go their way. Oral arguments are set to start on Wednesday for the case, which has the potential to cripple the healthcare law.
The case challenges the government’s authority to dole out subsidies to the 37 states with federal-run exchanges. Plaintiffs say the Affordable Care Act specifically only allows for states that set up their own exchanges to receive subsidies, while the government says the plaintiffs are misinterpreting the law.
If the subsidies are illegal, average monthly premium contributions for about 7.5 million people could increase between 122 and 774 percent, depending on the state, according to Avalere.
Residents in Alaska and Mississippi would have the highest increases, the think tank said.
Category Archives: “Intelligence”
The IRS’s inspector general confirmed Thursday it is conducting a criminal investigation into how Lois G. Lerner’s emails disappeared, saying it took only two weeks for investigators to find hundreds of tapes the agency’s chief had told Congress were irretrievably destroyed.
Investigators have already scoured 744 backup tapes and gleaned 32,774 unique emails, but just two weeks ago they found an additional 424 tapes that could contain even more Lerner emails, Deputy Inspector General Timothy P. Camus told the House Oversight Committee in a rare late-night hearing meant to look into the status of the investigation.
“There is potential criminal activity,” Mr. Camus said.
He said they have also discovered the hard drives from the IRS’s email servers, but said because the drives are out of synch it’s not clear whether they will be able to recover anything from them.
“To date we have found 32,744 unique emails that were backed up from Lois Lerner’s email box. We are in the process of comparing these emails to what the IRS has already produced to Congress to determine if we did in fact recover any new emails,” Mr. Camus said.
Democrats questioned the independence of Inspector General J. Russell George, who is overseeing the investigation, saying he’s injected politics into his work. (Pay back hurts, doesn’t it? Ed)
In one of the new emails, Lerner apparently wrote, “No one will ever believe that both your hard drive and mine crashed within a week of each other.”
As promised, President Obama is using executive actions to impose gun control on the nation, targeting the top-selling rifle in the country, the AR-15 style semi-automatic, with a ban on one of the most-used AR bullets by sportsmen and target shooters.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives this month revealed that it is proposing to put the ban on 5.56 mm ammo on a fast track, immediately driving up the price of the bullets and prompting retailers, including the huge outdoors company Cabela’s, to urge sportsmen to urge Congress to stop the president.
Wednesday night, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, the Republican chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, stepped in with a critical letter to the bureau demanding it explain the surprise and abrupt bullet ban. The letter is shown below.
The National Rifle Association, which is working with Goodlatte to gather co-signers, told Secrets that 30 House members have already co-signed the letter and Goodlatte and the NRA are hoping to get a total of 100 fast.
“The Obama administration was unable to ban America’s most popular sporting rifle through the legislative process, so now it’s trying to ban commonly owned and used ammunition through regulation,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of the NRA-ILA, the group’s policy and lobby shop. “The NRA and our tens of millions of supporters across the country will fight to stop President Obama’s latest attack on our Second Amendment freedoms.”
Dear Senator McConnell,
I mean this with all due respect – you’re worthless. Actually, you’re worse than worthless; you’re the problem.
You were better as minority leader. Your steering the Senate is worse than Harry Reid’s corruption. It’s almost enough to make me wish you could switch back places.
If Democrats want to filibuster funding the Department of Homeland Security, make them filibuster it. Keep the Senate open 24/7 and make them hold the floor. Meanwhile, you and your members explain to the American people why nothing else is happening in the Senate until Democrats stop their filibuster.
That is, of course, if you have any interest in doing what you’ve publicly said you wanted to do. You’re old, probably too old to run again, so you have no reason to care what your supporters want. You’ve moved into legacy territory. So was everything you’ve said about President Obama’s executive amnesty real or a lie to get this last term before you slip into oblivion?
In addition to forcing Democrats to conduct a real filibuster, consider one of the following options:
1 Let Homeland Security shut down. Considering roughly 90 percent of the people who work there are “essential,” no one will notice. Democrats and the White House will scream and cry, but you have the truth on your side. More than that, you have the American people on your side, who oppose the president’s illegal amnesty action. If you can’t effectively message that, even with the media working against you, you should quit.
2 Work with the House to bring up a “clean” bill so the Democrats won’t filibuster it, then offer the blocking language as an amendment. Use the exact same language from a stand-alone defund bill so the Democrats you would be offering cover would either have to vote for it again or vote against it. Then, when you move to final passage of the amended bill and Democrats filibuster again, make them actually filibuster. Keep them there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week until they give in. Then they’d be filibustering a bill over language many of them supported just a few days earlier.
3 Screw the filibuster. When Harry Reid changed the filibuster rule he made it perfectly clear that rules and traditions mean nothing; it’s the progressive agenda he’s loyal to. That’s how Democrats ran the Senate; give them a dose of their own medicine.
Isn’t it time you start leading?
The crisis between the United States and Israel has been manufactured by the Obama administration. Building a crisis up or down is well within the administration’s power, and it has chosen to build it up. Why? Three reasons: to damage and defeat Netanyahu (whom Obama has always disliked simply because he is on the right while Obama is on the left) in his election campaign, to prevent Israel from affecting the Iran policy debate in the United States, and worst of all to diminish Israel’s popularity in the United States and especially among Democrats.
First comes the personal relationship and the desire to see Netanyahu lose the election. Recall that Obama became president before Netanyahu became prime minister, and it is obvious that the dislike was both personal and political before Netanyahu had done anything. Obama does not like people on the right, period—Americans, Israelis, Australians, you name it.
Susan Rice has determined that her job is to make bilateral relations worse, and has established no relationship with her Israeli counterpart Yossi Cohen. So the problem is not just bad chemistry at the top; it is an administration that has decided to create a tense and negative relationship from the top down.
Clearly the administration worries that Israeli (not just Netanyahu, but Israeli) criticisms of the possible Iran nuclear deal might begin to reverberate. So it has adopted the tactic of personalizing the Israeli critique. The third Obama administration reason for building up this crisis is also deadly serious: it is to use the current tension to harm Israel’s support in the United States permanently.
Perhaps this manufactured crisis will diminish after Netanyahu’s speech, where he is likely to say things that many Democrats still agree with. Perhaps it will diminish if Iran rejects any deal, even on the terms the Obama administration is offering. Perhaps Netanyahu will lose his election and a new Labor Party-led government will appear in Jerusalem. But more likely, the remaining 23 months of the Obama administration will be months of continuing tension between Israel and the United States. That is because the administration desires that tension and views it as productive. The problem is not Netanyahu’s speech, which right or wrong to deliver should be a minor and passing factor in bilateral relations. The real issues are deeper and far more serious. This president has fostered a crisis in relations because it advances his own political and policy goals. That is what his subordinates and many Democrats in Congress are trying very hard, and with real success, to obfuscate.
With only days to go before a deadline for funding the Department of Homeland Security, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is desperately seeking a way to sell Republicans in both houses of Congress on a plan to get themselves out of the trap that President Obama set for them. His conservative critics aren’t wrong when they say this is nothing more than a GOP surrender that gives up any hope of taking a stand against the president’s extralegal executive orders granting wholesale amnesty to up to five million illegal immigrants. But unless McConnell can persuade House Republicans to go along with him, the understandable desire to defund those parts of the government that will carry out the president’s orders will cause the party to embark on another suicide charge that might prove to be even more disastrous than the 2013 government shutdown.
Let’s specify that Tea Partiers and other GOP stalwarts are right to be outraged about the president’s end-run around the Constitution. The notion that a president has the right to legislate on his own simply because he says he gave Congress time to do what he wanted it to do and must now act since they failed to is absurd as well as reflecting contempt for the rule of law. Regardless of one’s views about the need for immigration reform, the president’s actions constitute an ominous precedent that presage a constitutional crisis as the executive branch runs roughshod over the normal order of government. Indeed, even many Democrats said as much last fall prior to the orders, especially those up for reelection.
But simply because something is wrong and should be stopped doesn’t necessarily mean there is a way to do it that is politically palatable. The orders were given in a way that there is no option for halting their implementation other than defunding the Immigration and Naturalization Service, which now falls under the purview of the Department of Homeland Security. The courts may rule in favor of the 26 states that have sued to halt Obama’s orders. The decision of one federal judge in Texas in favor of that suit has, at least temporarily, stopped Obama in his tracks. But unless that track works—and it is likely that it won’t—the only alternative is defunding DHS.
#1 Wal-Mart Greeters
Who better to meet and greet shoppers — and urge them to load their shopping carts to overflowing — than hooded and black-robed jihadists who will decapitate anyone who dares to oppose them?
#2 Part of the Establishment of Free Community Colleges
As the president never tires of saying, we must “invest” more in the education and training of our young people —including, as he sees it, young jihadists who are contemptuous of everything Western education has to offer.
#3 Posters, Flags, and All Kinds of Signage
The Islamic State is already on record in promising to fly its black flag over the White House. If that is the kind of thing young jihadists like to do, why not encourage them to fly their flag and to raise their banners at other public buildings around the country?
#4 Border Security
The jihadists know all about border security.
#5 Tax Collection and Revenue Enhancement
The Obama administration could employ thousands or even millions of jihadists as old-style tax farmers or tax collectors — personally empowered to go out into the field to collect money from anyone lucky enough to continue to possess it.
#6 Obamacare Death Panels
In addition to their new duties as tax collectors, jihadists could therefore have a role in the implementation or enforcement of Obamacare.
#7 Social Media
The astounding growth of the Islamic State over the past year has been due in no small part to its mastery of the Internet and social media to recruit new members from all over the world and to launch terrorist attacks throughout the Middle East and Europe. Surely, the new Obama jobs-for-jihadists plan will find a way to channel their social media moxie in more innocent ways — as the president himself did recently in clowning around with a selfie stick… making the video of himself for HealthCare.gov that went viral.
#8 Infrastructure Building and Demolition
Let the jihadists have at our roads, bridges, dams, and port facilities.
#9 Early Childhood Education and Development
No time is too soon for children to be taken from their parents and turned over to educators trained by the state. Those who have been trained in this way (including many jihadists) can train others.
#10 Sustainability / Reducing our Carbon Footprint
The jihadists want to turn the clock back more than 1,200 years — teaching us all to live like goat herders. What’s not to like about that? We have everything to learn from them about reducing our carbon footprint.