The dispute about the health care reform, the so-called Obamacare, has been resolved. The U.S. Supreme Court upheld its constitutionality and the majority of voters supported the president, the one who championed the measure.
However, at least 16 Republican governors have refused to participate in the program. They are refusing to create state insurance exchanges where several health insurance plans compete.
With this decision, they are literally leaving the Medicaid expansion in their state in the hands of the federal government. At the same time, they are delaying the possibility of providing health care coverage to their uninsured residents.
Obamacare is a health care coverage law that, unlike a national health care program, focuses on state participation so each state can adapt the program to its needs at no additional cost.
That is why the choice to opt out is the ultimate irony for governors like Rick Perry of Texas, who have prided themselves in defending state’s rights and are now yielding their opportunity to take action to the federal government. Of course, later they could denounce Obamacare as federal intervention, which they believe it is, and perhaps that is why they are making these decisions.
The worst part is not the hypocrisy, ideological extremism or simply hatred of the law. The problem is that because of their actions, they will delay health care coverage for millions. States that opted not to participate, like Florida, Texas and other Southern states, are among those with the highest rates of uninsured in the country, especially among Latinos and African Americans.
It is always upsetting to see how a political class that is insured allows itself the luxury of putting their ideology and antipathy before the needs of their people to obtain similar access to medical care.
In this case, California set an example to be followed because of its advances in creating an insurance exchange. This means the number of uninsured residents will start decreasing.
It is a shame that there are governors who are stubbornly continuing a war–at the expense of their people–that should have already ended.