Orthopedic surgeon turned U.S. Sen. John Barrasso tells Newsmax.TV he is hopeful that the Supreme Court will overturn Obamacare after attending today’s historic oral arguments.
“I sure hope that the individual mandate is struck down. It’s hard to guess what the justices will ultimately decide, but today was the main event — the big discussion about whether the government had a right to come into our homes and tell us we must buy a government-approved product,” Barrasso said in an exclusive interview on Tuesday. “To me that was the bright line in the sand that they were debating.”
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He insists there is no precedent for a government-mandated healthcare system in the U.S. even though the federal government regulates other industries, such as automotive.
“If you wanted to buy a car, they could say ‘well it has to have this kind of fuel efficiency or certain kind of emission controls on it.’ But never could they go and say ‘and you have to buy the car,’” according to Barrasso.
“Well, now they’re saying ‘and you have to buy the insurance.’ So that to me was the big line in the sand in the discussion, and the one that I believe that the Supreme Court ought to strike down.”
Having been named “Wyoming Physician of the Year,” Barrasso said that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act benefits neither providers nor patients.
“This healthcare law is bad for patients. It’s bad for providers — the nurses and doctors who take care of those patients — and terrible for taxpayers,” said Barrasso, who graduated from the Georgetown University School of Medicine in 1978. “So I think this law is not a good law for our country, and the best thing that can happen right now is for the Supreme Court to rule that it is unconstitutional, that Congress overstepped its bounds and has said things that the American people know is not in our Constitution.”
A decision by the Supreme Court to uphold the law, would only ignite the Republican base. According to Barrasso:
“Voters will be much more motivated to come to the polls in November and to vote to remove President Obama from the White House, and vote to remove the Democrats who voted for this in the first place,” he said.
Barrasso, who chairs the Senate Republican Policy Committee, cited a recent survey in The New York Times which found that only 24 percent of Americans believe Obamacare should be upheld by the high court.
“The others say it should be struck down — either in part or in total,” he said. “So you still have three out of four Americans saying ‘no thank you, and if the Supreme Court upholds the president, the American people are going to be outraged.”
While Barrasso has not endorsed any of the four GOP candidates vying to take on President Obama in the general election, he draws a distinction between the Massachusetts healthcare law supported by Mitt Romney and Obamacare — even though one of the president’s advisors proclaimed Romney the “godfather” of the president’s sweeping healthcare reform law on Sunday.
“The big difference to me is that states have rights to do what they think is best for the citizens of that state,” he explained. “But what works well for one state may not be something that citizens in another state want, or desire, or can afford.”
In the case of the United States, Barrasso said he is certain that the country will not benefit from Obamacare.
“This healthcare law is a mandate for the entire country and it’s something we cannot afford,” he said. “Across the country, people believe that their healthcare will be worse, not better, under this law, and the cost will be higher not lower.”
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