King v. Burwell: The Facts and Implications

June 5, 2015

This briefing told you what you need to know about a major Supreme Court challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Court is expected to make a decision in June, and a ruling for the King petitioners could mean that individuals will no longer be able to receive subsidies to purchase health insurance through the federal marketplace. The federal government is operating insurance marketplaces in more than 30 states. Currently, subsidies to buy health insurance are available to individuals with incomes between 100 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty level (i.e., those with annual incomes between $11,770 and $47,080).

If the challenge is successful, how will policymakers in Congress and at the state level respond? Will states rush to switch from federal to state marketplaces? What are the challenges? How many people would lose subsidies?

If you were unable to attend the briefing, here are some key takeaways:
Simon Lazarus, senior counsel, Constitutional Accountability Center
A ruling for the plaintiff would render the affected exchanges essentially inoperable, according to Simon Lazarus.

Michael Cannon, director of health policy studies, CATO Institute
The plaintiff has 100 percent of the facts on his side, which gives him a 20 percent chance of winning this case, said Michael Cannon.

Dan Crippen, executive director, National Governors Association
But, states would have options, including creating state-based exchanges, using other states’ IT, leasing federal IT, forming regional exchanges or possibly even running subsidies through CHIP, said Dan Crippen.

Robert Blendon, professor of health policy and political analysis, Harvard School of Public Health
Republicans would put forward a bill to replace subsidies if the plaintiff wins, and they are already talking about such measures, said Robert Blendon.

Ed Howard of the Alliance moderated.

Contact: Marilyn Serafini (202)789-2300

Follow the briefing on Twitter: #KingvBurwell

The event was sponsored by the nonpartisan Alliance for Health Reform and supported by Ascension Health.


Full Transcript (Adobe Acrobat PDF)

Speaker Presentations

Robert Blendon Presentation (Adobe Acrobat PDF)

Event Details

Agenda (Adobe Acrobat PDF)
Speaker Biographies (Adobe Acrobat PDF)

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