Romney-care on the way to Georgia?

During my podcast with Senator Eric Johnson, he mentioned that some legislation was about to be introduced that included some to the health insurance reforms that Newt Gingrich had been pushing.

Judson Hill has filed Senate Bill 28. I’ve been reading over it and it looks a lot like the new laws in Massachusetts, which in and of it’s self is a scary thought.

Here are just a couple parts of the legislation…

You are required to prove that you have insurance coverage.

Effective January 1, 2008, the following individuals who are over the age of 18 and have not yet attained the age of 65 and whose annual gross income exceeds 300 percent of the federal poverty level for the immediately preceding calendar year shall offer proof of their ability to pay for medical care for themselves and their dependents.

If you fail to comply with the above statue, be prepared to have your wages garnished.

(d) If, in any calendar year, an individual subject to the requirement in subsection (a) of this Code section fails to comply with said requirement, the commissioner of revenue shall establish an escrow account in the name of said individual and:
(1) Shall retain and deposit in said account all such funds as may be owed to said individual by the State of Georgia, including, but not limited to, any overpayment by said individual of any taxes imposed by the State of Georgia;
(2) Shall obtain an order for the attachment of the wages of said individual to satisfy the requirements of this Code section; or
(3) Both paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection.

Very Big Brother sounding stuff. Admittedly, I’m no fan of the Massachusetts plan, and I’m even less a fan of the plan California is about to implement.

The Massachusetts statues are the very reason that Mitt Romney shouldn’t be elected President, I don’t give a damn what his stance on abortion was or is now or what it may be in four years.

Michael Tanner at the Cato Institute writes that these types of the requirements “opens the door to widespread regulation of the health care industry and political interference in personal health care decisions. The result will be a slow but steady spiral downward toward a government-run, national health care system.”

I know a lot of you are ready jump on the Romney train for President, but if anything similar to his healthcare reform in Massachusetts are introduced here in Georgia, I think it will be a disaster for the state and it will increase the size of government…which is what the party in control of the legislature is supposed to be against.

21 comments

  1. GOPeach says:

    I am not for Romney!
    Nobody I know is either.

    He is nuts!
    Judson better get a grip if he is
    going this direction… it could be
    the end for his political support in
    East Cobb – near me.

  2. liberty21 says:

    This is nuts. SB 28 will not fly with Georgia voters, if passed SB 28 could have a impact on Judson Hill’s re-election and the state legislature in the 2008 elections.

  3. Erick says:

    The Massachusetts plan is already being revealed to be a cost nightmare. The cost overruns clearly show the bill’s analysis underestimated its costs to make it appeal to Republicans.

  4. dogface says:

    Another RINO-bill. Who will hold these so-called Republicans accountable??? Who will hold them to their promises, hold their feet to the fire?

    Campaigning they always talk about less government, free markets/free enterprise.

    Elected: big government intrusion and big government solutions.

    Judson ought to be embarrassed.

  5. VictoratGaImproper says:

    Re: Health Care Insurance issues for Georgia Families

    1/13/07
    Dear Jason,

    We’re both going to learn something from this Health Care Insurance Debate if we have the attention span and stamina to prioritize Health Care for Georgia‘s Families, so ask Erick to please not start censoring debate on the issue again. He claims to want this forum to be for all Georgians, time will tell his sincerity.

    You can judge a “politics for politics sake” politico by the point they stop addressing an issue more than you can by what they say on the campaign trail. As a Libertarian, I’m sure you’ve observed that.

    A fortune cookie once said, “Don’t’ seek so much to find the answer as much as to understand the question better.” If his parables were any indication, I’m pretty sure that was Jesus’ philosophy also. So, I guess you and I are progressively understanding the questions here. BTW, good work on Georgia Legislative Watch, hope you can sell some advertising.
    http://www.georgialegislativewatch.com/

    I know that this would go against your devout trust in and Pledge of Allegiance to the good will and benevolence of Corporate America; but do you really think Judson Hill & Newt Gingrich came up with this on their own? Wasn’t Judson one of Ralph Reed’s Attorneys, not too long ago? Isn’t Senator Hill a Merger & Acquisition Attorney?

    We’ve got a lot more dots to connect before we know the real story, so please don’t quit before the essence is revealed. Take a look at the number one donors to Judson’s State Senate Campaign and ask if there may be an undercurrent at work here.
    http://www.vote-smart.org/finance.php?can_id=MGA98218&fec_id=

    Which Health Care Insurance Conglomerates do you think will benefit most from this? Do you really think they will self regulate? Please read through the historical financial news on Wellpoint & United Health Care and study the Kaiser Family Foundation Website before you answer that.
    http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=WLP
    http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=UNH
    http://www.kff.org

    With a government administered, single payor health care system, do you think the voting citizens would allow the administrators to take hundreds of millions in “personal compensation” out of the system before they start paying claims to Doctors and Hospitals? That’s what Wellpoint Chair Larry Glascock and ex Chair Leonard Schaeffer have been doing for years. Not to mention United Health Care’s recent stock option faux pas.

    Scroll through the stock option and merger & acquisition history of WLP and UNH on the financial links and at the Securities and Exchange Commmission site. http://finance.yahoo.com/q/it?s=WLP
    http://finance.yahoo.com/q/mh?s=WLP
    http://finance.yahoo.com/q/it?s=UNH
    http://finance.yahoo.com/q/mh?s=UNH

    http://www.sec.gov/cgi-bin/browse-edgar?company=Wellpoint&CIK=&filenum=&State=&SIC=&owner=include&action=getcompany

    http://www.sec.gov/cgi-bin/browse-edgar?company=United+Health+&CIK=&filenum=&State=&SIC=&owner=include&action=getcompany

    Do an Open Record’s Request for the 2004 Wellpoint/Anthem Merger hearing with Insurance Commissioner Oxendine and ask him why he stopped and temporarily reversed his position, which originally supported the 18 billion dollar merger; after I helped reveal that California had gotten fallout concession from Wellpoint and Anthem. Ask how the resulting Telemedicine settlement for Rural Health Care Hospitals in Georgia is being administered and overseen by Mr. Oxendine, or to whomever he delegated the task.

    What’s so hard about standing up and saying you are for transparent, fair, equitable and accessible health care for all Georgia Families? Almost everyone with a convenient-memory conscience said it on the campaign trail. Some industries should be sacred. I’ll salute your making all the money you want selling advertising on blogs or baseball bats but lets maybe draw the line at playing “Wall Street Merger & Acquisition Games” with the health of Georgia Families.

    If you want to see your health insurance claims continue to escalate and be processed in India and South America and see Georgian‘s health care Insurance dollars go to a Corporation based in Indianapolis, Indiana or Minnetonka, Minnesota, then stand firm in your convictions and don’t flip flop, even in the face of new evidence. According to the Manly mindset here on Peach Pundit, it’s not macho or kosher to change ones mind, even when enlightened with new truths or a broader understanding. So I guess Jesus was being a flip flopper when he switched from Judaism to Christianity?

    The Georgia Ethics commission hasn’t given itself the right to investigate Conflicts of Interest, so theoretically, our Georgia Legislators have the green light to trade as many favors with the Insurance Lobby that they want and there will be no consequences from Cousin Sonny‘s, arbitrarily, self regulating ethics department.

    Per your statement: “Deregulation has not and will not create a monopoly. If anything it creates more opportunity for competition.” I ask, Why did David Shafer feel it necessary to introduce SB509 and Tom Knox do the same with HB 1517? And how does creating a favorable environment for one or two, internationally-financed insurers to buy up all the smaller insurers create a healthy market place? Delta is ready, why isn’t Georgia?

    I know you are a free thinking, independent kind of guy and I respect that.
    But figuratively speaking, don’t wait til they are standing at your doorstep, after they burn everyone else’s house down and ask others for help, we might already be in heaven with Jesus by then.

    Have a good weekend bro,

    VictoratGaImproper
    http://www.macon-bibb.com/GONZO

  6. GeorgiaConservative says:

    Romneycare was fine for Massachussets. They were moving unavoidably to socialized health care and Romney’s way was 100 times better than socialized health care.
    However, I don’t want this system in Georgia. If I don’t want health insurance, that is my decision to make. So, don’t go forcing me to buy something I don’t want. If people are abusing free emergency room care, make them pay, don’t penalize the rest of us by forcing us to buy health insurance. Remember the criteria…Republicans are trying to reduce government and increase freedom.

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  8. andrew_claxton says:

    I can appreciate the shocked reaction from many conservatives. However you are misunderstanding what SB28 will do!

    There is no question that our state needs comprehensive health insurance reform. You guys have seriously missed the entire concept here. This is not socialized medicine, it is not going to create a new, onerous bureaucracy.

    What will inevitably lead to national socialized healthcare is if we are to allow the broken system to limp on.

    Visit Newt Gingrich’s website
    http://www.healthtransformation.net

  9. andrew_claxton says:

    Jason Pye,

    1 out of 6 adults in Georgia are uninsured. SB 28 will allow the Commissioner of Insurance to develop consumer driven health insurance plans. This will create more affordable and flexible plans.

    This is exactly the type of creative, consumer driven solution that Michael Tanner at the Cato Institute adovcates!

    “Introduce market mechanisms to give consumers more control over and responsibility for their health care decisions. In doing so, we can actually increase coverage and reduce the free-rider problem…And, to the degree that health care and health insurance become less expensive, more low-income people can be brought into the system.” -M. Tanner

  10. Jason Pye says:

    You still have privacy issues, as well as the ability to garnish wages if someone doesn’t provide proof of insurance.

    That are serious problems. It’s not socialized medicine, but as Tanner said over at Cato @ Liberty:

    Supporters of Governor Romney’s Massachusetts health care plan scoffed when I warned that it “opens the door to widespread regulation of the health care industry and political interference in personal health care decisions. The result will be a slow but steady spiral downward toward a government-run, national health care system.” Recent events, alas, suggest that I was right.

    You are either trying to pull the wool over our eyes or you can’t read.

  11. andrew_claxton says:

    1. There is no privacy issue here! It is no more invasive than when you are asked to provide proof of your automobile insurance. Healthcare providers already ask for your health insurance information anyway!

    2. Where in SB 28 does it ever say anything about wage garnishment? NOWHERE! You have completely made that up Jason.

  12. Jason Pye says:

    Where in SB 28 does it ever say anything about wage garnishment? NOWHERE!

    Are you seriously that stupid? It’s posted in the thread and it’s in the damn bill under 33-62-15 (d) of the legislation, which you can read here.

    But I’ll repost it for you:

    (d) If, in any calendar year, an individual subject to the requirement in subsection (a) of this Code section fails to comply with said requirement, the commissioner of revenue shall establish an escrow account in the name of said individual and:
    (1) Shall retain and deposit in said account all such funds as may be owed to said individual by the State of Georgia, including, but not limited to, any overpayment by said individual of any taxes imposed by the State of Georgia;
    (2) Shall obtain an order for the attachment of the wages of said individual to satisfy the requirements of this Code section; or
    (3) Both paragraphs (1) and (2) of this subsection.

    An attachment of wages is garnishment.

  13. andrew_claxton says:

    Jason, I’m no insurance salesman but to use “garnishment”, “attachment” and “withholding” interchangeably is inaccurate.

    I’m also no Boortz-libertarian but it is perfectly reasonable and unintrusive to require individuals to either prove that they have health insurance, or that they are financially sound, or require them to join a state approved plan.

  14. Jason Pye says:

    I’m no insurance salesman but to use “garnishment”, “attachment” and “withholding” interchangeably is inaccurate.

    It’s the same wording is used for payroll taxes, federal income tax and to pay child support.
    To put it bluntly, you’re wrong.

    And I don’t believe the government has any right to make individual prove that they have insurance coverage. It is an invasion of privacy, whether you like it or not.

  15. Green Death says:

    perfectly reasonable and unintrusive to require individuals to either prove that they have health insurance, or that they are financially sound, or require them to join a state approved plan.

    Why is it perfectly reasonable to make that requirment? Shouldn’t I be able to make that decision as a free man in a free state?

    You present as the proposition as an axiom when it is an anathema.

    And — just for grins – ‘attachment of wages” is – in this context – synonymous with ‘garnishment’. The effect (some entity taking your wages before you decide what to do with them in order to pay an obligation that a government run organization has decided you owe) is the same.

  16. Green Death says:

    With a government administered, single payor health care system

    Can you name one country with a health care system as described above that has anywhere near as effective a system as we have. Don’t tell me about poor people not having access – its not true – and in our system the poor, uninsured have better coverage than the poor in Cuba, Canada etc. The existence of universal coverage doesn’t change the quality of care received.

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