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No Medicaid expansion means businesses will pay

A story in today's paper deals with one of the ripple effects of the Legislature's inability to reach a deal on Medicaid expanion this session. Roughly 1 million uninsured Floridians would have received coverage if a deal had been reached. Many of them work for businesses that now must provide that insurance or face hefty federal fines.

An excerpt:

Either way, the Legislature's inaction will saddle many businesses with additional costs that could reach, in total, close to $150 million next year.

"If you do not do Medicaid expansion, or something similar to that, there is a very real penalty imposed upon the employers of the state of Florida," said Sen. David Simmons, R-Altamonte Springs, who had pushed some compromise.

... The historic U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding the law actually created some of the current problems. While justices ruled that the centerpiece of the law — a requirement that most everyone have health insurance — was constitutional, they struck down a provision that would have essentially required states to expand Medicaid.

By giving states a choice whether to expand, the court created loopholes about who would be covered and how, and who would be left out.

Part of the law that remained in place requires businesses with more than 50 full-time employees to provide health insurance coverage to anyone working more than 30 hours a week. Many people in agriculture, tourism and hospitality would have been eligible for an expanded Medicaid program.

But with no Medicaid expansion, those workers must either get health insurance from their employers, or they can turn to a federal health exchange to purchase insurance.

If they use a federal exchange, their bosses will be penalized.

Read more here.


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Rick Scott Poster Boy for Fraud in the U.S.


Perhaps the most prominent instance of corporate fraud was the 1997 case against HCA/Columbia, the nation’s largest health care company. That case, which also began with a federal raid of the HCA corporate offices, ended in the largest fraud settlement in U.S. history of $2 billion.

While investigators focused on HCA CEO Rick Scott, no criminal charges were ultimately filed against him. That didn’t stop one former federal prosecutor from heaping blame on Scott, who resigned after the investigation but is now governor of Florida.

In 2010 former assistant U.S. Attorney A.G. Alexander III filmed a political ad blaming Scott for the fraud.

“Companies he created, owned, invested in or controlled systematically defrauded taxpayers,” Alexander said of Scott during the 2010 ad. “Rick Scott claims he didn’t know. Well the facts and the timeline say different.”

While Scott escaped criminal charges, four HCA executives did face criminal charges.

Elmo Jon Brown

The Tea Party and all the groups are responsible for this.

The Tea Party is destroying the true American fabric of governing. It's un-American.

Tea Party Power!

Can you feel, and fear the Tea Party power Elmo? I'll bet you were first in line to bury us, and now you are blaming us.

But Simmons has it wrong - Obamacare is applying the very real penalty, and its not to businesses. Its to people.

Weatherford was very shrewd to kill the Medicaid expansion. Most Floridians will blame Dems in 2014 for the looming disaster and associated taxes, and for once, those Floridians will be right.

Meanwhile, Obama continues to force dems into hard choices on gun grabbing and trying to figure out who Ben Ghazi is.


"Tea Party Power!" It's "Benghazi" - one word. Your statements make little or no sense at all. Starting from the last one on Obama "forcing" Dems. What a crock. You do sound like the tea party, brownie points for that.

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