More than 1.46 million Floridians in Republican congressional districts will lose a total of $6.8 billion in tax credits for health care if the U.S. Supreme Court rules in King v Burwell that the federal government overstepped its authority by granting tax credits to people purchasing Obamcare plans through a federal health exchange.
The information was compiled by the Committee on Energy and Commerce minority staff. It shows that the district that could suffer the most is U.S. Rep. Mario Diaz Balart’s, where 187,000 people have enrolled in Obamacare through the federal exchange (HealthCare.gov) and that $905 million in subsidies were awarded.
U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen also has a district that would be negatively impacted by a ruling against the government: 176,000 people are enrolled in Obamacare in her district and $850 million in tax credits have been approved.
The information identifies 17 Republican congressional districts as well as the number of people living in those districts who enrolled in Obamacare through the federal exchange and the amount of subsidies received.
That information was put into an infograph “to drive home the fact that Republican leaders need to have a plan in place should the Supreme Court rule in favor of King,” said lobbyist Tim Buckley, with the public affairs firm, Sloane Mackenzie.
According to the data, U.S. Rep. Jeff Miller represents the Republican-held congressional district that would be least impacted: there are 46,000 people in his district enrolled in Obamacare who received $223 million in tax credits, the least impacted district.
In all, there are nearly 1.6 million people enrolled in Obamacare through the federal exchange in Florida and 93 percent of the enrollees qualify for a $294 per month tax subsidy.
The U.S. Supreme Court on March 4 heard the case King v Burwell. The case challenges the IRS’ authority to grant tax subsidies to individuals who enrolled in Obamacare through a federal exchange. A section of the law makes clear that the subsidies are available to those who enroll in a state exchange.
Thirty-four states, including Florida, declined to create the exchanges.
The federal healthcare law establishes “exchanges” at the state and federal level. Exchanges allow one-stop shopping for health coverage, giving individuals and small businesses the opportunity to readily compare available plans.
The IRS rule makes the subsidies available to all who enroll in the program regardless of whether it’s through a state or the federal exchange. The petitioners live in Virginia, which did not establish a state exchange. They argue that with access to the tax subsidy, they no longer qualify for the hardship exemption under the federal healthcare law. The law allows people to be exempt from the mandate to buy health insurance if the annual cost of coverage exceeds 8 percent of the projected household income.”