The federal government has been embroiled in a battle regarding last year’s health care reform. One of the key provisions of the Affordable Care Act, and one that is most indignantly contested, calls for states to establish a health insurance exchange. Thus far, the federal government has provided states with funding to help them toward this goal. Republicans, many of whom oppose the health care overhaul, have been trying to bar the government from providing money to states for, what they say, is an unconstitutional measure.
Late Wednesday, the U.S. House of Representatives voted in favor of banning federal funds for states seeking to establish exchanges. While the proposed bill awaits its debut on the Senate floor, Democrats are saying there is no hope for the measure’s advancement. The measure has drawn the objection of President Obama, who insists that the existing health care system is in desperate need of reform.
Despite the controversy surrounding the Affordable Care Act, the provision for health insurance exchanges is one that has gained support from states and insurers. The exchanges will allow citizens to find coverage that is both affordable and high quality. Insurers support the provision on the grounds that it will make the market more competitive and will drive down medical and administrative costs.
The measure has yet to be scheduled for a Senate hearing. Should it pass the Senate, the bill would likely get shot down by the President himself.