health insurance

Californians without health insurance will pay a penalty — or not
The Golden State will join four states and Washington, D.C., in requiring their residents to have health coverage and penalizing those without it.

(DigitalVision Vectors/Getty Images)

By Bernard J. Wolfson, Kaiser Health News

Californians, be warned: A new state law could make you liable for a hefty tax penalty if you do not have health insurance next year and beyond.

Court strikes down individual mandate for Obamacare
The 2010 health care law’s mandate for most Americans to buy insurance is unconstitutional, said a long-awaited 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling

Responding to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals striking down Obamacare’s “individual mandate” for health insurance, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra says his state will “move swiftly to challenge this decision because this could mean the difference between life and death.” (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A federal appeals court on Wednesday struck down the requirement that most Americans have health insurance, nullifying a major part of the 2010 health care law, but punted on the broader question about whether the rest of the law can stand.

A 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel ruled, 2-1, in its long-awaited decision that the so-called “individual mandate” to get insurance cannot stand after Republicans zeroed out the tax penalty for not having coverage. The panel sent the case back to a district court in the Northern District of Texas to consider other parts of the law.

Senate Democrats to force vote on Trump health care rule
Resolution looks to block rulemaking on short-term health insurance

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said "These plans let the insurance companies get away with everything, even murder, figuratively speaking.” (File photo by Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Democrats unveiled plans Wednesday to force a vote on Trump administration health insurance guidance that could make it easier for states to get waivers from the 2010 health care law's requirements.

“What we're talking about today is granting waivers to states to offer junk insurance plans,” Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., said in a press conference. “These plans let the insurance companies get away with everything, even murder, figuratively speaking.” 

Hill Flounders on Kids’ Care
Congress’ failure to extend a popular insurance program leaves millions of children at risk of losing health care

A girl is examined by a physician’s assistant in Aurora, Colo. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Minnesota officials knew they would exhaust Children’s Health Insurance Program money by the end of this year. Then they discovered the news was worse: The state would likely be out of money for coverage of low-income children and pregnant women by the end of September. And it became increasingly clear that Congress was probably not going to meet a deadline to help.

The state will have “to take extraordinary measures to ensure that coverage continues beyond October 1, 2017, if Congress does not act,” warned Minnesota Department of Human Services Commissioner Emily Piper in a Sept. 13 letter pleading with lawmakers for “urgent” action.

Capitol Ink | Spring Training

Ep. 44: Republicans Grab Health Care’s Third Rail
The Big Story

CQ Roll Call's leadership editor Jason Dick and senior political reporter Bridget Bowman explain the bumpy road ahead for Republican leaders as they try to sell their health care bill to their own members and the public.

Show Notes:

Capitol Ink | Caducean Knot