Now that the bill has passed, let’s see what’s in it!

According to Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi (D. Calif.), with the passage of Obamacare yesterday, now is the time to find out what it includes.  Most of you won’t like it any better now, than you did before passage, but, let’s begin.

Is Congress covered by the bill?  Yes, they are, but, that doesn’t really answer your question accurately.  All Americans are subject to the bill so that beginning in 2014, if you do not have a “qualified” insurance plan, you will pay a tax.  However, as the health insurance Congress receives (subsidized by you, of course) is so far superior to even the best “Cadillac” insurance policy, their plan will clearly be “qualified”.  A better question to ask your representative is, “will I receive the same insurance as Congress”?  The answer to that is a resounding “no”.  In fact, many people will be placed on Medicaid.  Ask your representative if he or she would be willing to be covered by Medicaid.

What is a “qualified” plan?  Actually, we don’t have any idea, nor does Congress.  The bill gives complete, absolute, total discretion to the Secretary of Health and Human Services to make that decision for you, as, pursuant to the thought process employed by Congress, you are completely incapable of making that decision on your own.  The Secretary will decide the amount of your deductible, the amount of your co-pay, and the types of medical care that must be covered…much like the current hodge podge of State mandates that have done nothing but drive up the cost of  insurance.

Can I keep my insurance if I like it?  You absolutely can, but, beginning in 2014, if your insurance doesn’t have the Secretary’s “Good Housekeeping” seal of approval, you will be forced to either pay a tax, or, drop the insurance you like, and move to a government approved plan.  The same is true for those who are covered by their employer’s group plan.  That plan must also be qualified, leaving an employer with three choices if his or her employee plan doesn’t come “up to snuff”.  First, ask the employees to increase their contribution toward the cost; second, pick up the increased costs himself; or, third, drop the plan entirely, and, pay a tax.

And, what about those taxes, how much will they be?  Good question…we don’t know.  Should the “Reconciliation Bill” pass the Senate, an individual will pay $695 (or 2.5% of his income, whichever is higher), and a business with more than 50 employees will pay $3000 per employee (yup, you read that right, a minimum of $150,000 per year).  If the Reconciliation Bill does not pass the Senate, the taxes are somewhat smaller.

Like the bill any better now that it has passed, and, you can see it?

Posted in


The Sound Off Sister was an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and special trial attorney for the Department of Justice, Criminal Division; a partner in the Florida law firm of Shutts & Bowen, and an adjunct professor at the University of Miami, School of Law. The Sound Off Sister offers frequent commentary concerning legislation making its way through Congress, including the health reform legislation passed in early 2010.


  1. donh on March 22, 2010 at 5:28 pm

    No doubt the majority of people who responded in positive approval to this bill work for the government. It was their job to make up lies and propaganda with our money. They received their pay to push the talking points without any shame for what they were doing. They will  sleep soundly even though their action will lead to national  bankruptcy and institutional homocide. While those who were part of this  scam can gleefully  cash their checks, there is another segment of the population who actually believe  the Big Lie. I feel sorry for those CHUMPS who think they will get free healthcare , lower insurance premiums, and better quality of care.

  2. Dimsdale on March 23, 2010 at 4:20 am

    Ever notice that everything that Obama and the Democrats say is followed by a silent "but"?


    "You will be able to keep your healthcare if you like it, BUT, it will cost more and may not be approved by the government."


    "No illegal immigrant will be allowed to get federally funded health care benefits, BUT, we will make all illegals legal through amnesty."


    "Your taxes won't go up one thin dime, BUT, it will go up many dollars, particularly for your children and grandchildren and greatgrandchildren etc."


    "You will have the same coverage that Congress gets, BUT, you will only be able to get it if there are enough doctors, and we have effectively killed that market."


    "If you don't like this bill, vote against it, BUT, we will crush you and your chances for reelection."


    You get the idea.


    As an aside, isn't it particularly galling that the mainstream news and morning shows are telling us about what is in this boondoggle, AFTER it has passed, not before?

  3. Ellyon on March 23, 2010 at 4:23 am

    I called my Congressman Joe Courtney yesterday to ask a simple question regarding the new healthcare bill. "Now that we have healthcare do I send all my hospital and pharmaceutical and doctor bills to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue?" Comment by the lady staff member "Are you serious". I said"But of course, can Mr. Courtney respond to me please". She says "UH".

    So I gave my name ,address and e-mail and told her that Mr Courtney can call me at "anytime to respond". Do you think I will get a call?

    • Dimsdale on March 23, 2010 at 8:10 am

      Right after the planet melts from "global warming"!


      Seriously though, he might actually think that you are a Democrat, given the silliness (inherent sarcasm the staff member completely missed) of the question, and you might get a reply!  It will be garbage of course, but he will expect to be talking to a Democrat, so only reply in monosyllabic words, or better, grunts!

  4. gillie28 on March 23, 2010 at 9:51 am

    The good thing is 2014 is a few years away and the country will be bankrupt long before that!!! 

    SOS, thanks for the post.  Do you happen to know if there are still some kind of exemptions for religious/spiritual commitments? 

The website's content and articles were migrated to a new framework in October 2023. You may see [shortcodes in brackets] that do not make any sense. Please ignore that stuff. We may fix it at some point, but we do not have the time now.

You'll also note comments migrated over may have misplaced question marks and missing spaces. All comments were migrated, but trackbacks may not show.

The site is not broken.