This comment, left at this post by Ed Kilgore:
Ed, Watertown MA on June 29, 2012 10:57 AM:
To all the handwringing, all I can say is look to Massachusetts. We already have a working model of how this will play out.
1). After initial griping, and a few longer doctor's waiting room delays as previously uninsured people hookup with their new Primary Care Physician, both patients and Doctors will become supporters.
2). Less than 2% of people will decide that they would rather pay additional taxes than get covered by health insurance.
3). Insurers will come up with a variety of different and innovative insurance plans that they will offer through the exchanges. Almost everyone will find something that they can afford that will allow them to get at least a minimum level of coverage and avoid being forced into bankruptcy by a medical emergency.
4). After the first few years, savings will start to appear as people go to their Primary Care Physician for preventative care as opposed to going to Emergency rooms, forcing the taxpayers to pay for the most expensive type of medical care.
5). Those of us working as Independent Contractors and Entrepeneurs will finally be able to find affordable coverage on the exchanges. People will no longer feel forced to stay at a job they hate just to keep health coverage. Now they can take a chance on starting new businesses without fear that they are putting their family at risk. New startups in Massachusetts are among the highest in the nation.
6). I don't know if it will translate across the country, but Massachusetts since instituting "RomneyCare" has been growing faster than almost all other states. As of May, we are now down to 6% unemployment. Much better than the national average of 8.2%: http://lmi2.detma.org/Lmi/News_release_state.asp
7). Paying for all this has increased the state budget by only 1% which has since been more than offset by the increased tax revenues from more employed workers.
So my final word? Chill out and stop listening to the people with the dire predictions. They have an alternative agenda. They are not trying to do the right thing for America. They just want to win the next election no matter how much damage they do.
There's not really a lot to say past that -- it's going to work, which is the part the right wing hates most of all. I still think Roberts voted to uphold the mandate because it means more customers for insurance companies -- business was largely silent on this one, except for a few who supported the mandate. No corporate interests seem to have been opposed. I think that explains Roberts' vote well enough.