Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli tells Newsmax.TV that three days of Supreme Court arguments about Obamacare have made it obvious that a new law is needed.
After listening to the testimony and justices’ questions, Cuccinelli expressed optimism about challenges he and other attorneys general have filed against President Barack Obama’s signature legislation.
“I’m as upbeat as I have been in the whole two years and five days now since we filed,” Cuccinelli told Newsmax in an exclusive interview.
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Cuccinelli, who was in the Supreme Court hearing room for the arguments on Monday and Tuesday and listened to live audio feed on Wednesday, said the discourse proved to him that "the least that would be stricken is the mandate along with guaranteed issue.”
Guaranteed issue refers to the portion of the Affordable Care Act that prohibits insurance companies from excluding patients from coverage for pre-existing conditions.
When asked whether certain portions of the law, such as young people’s being able to stay on their parents’ insurance plans, could survive if the mandate is stricken, Cuccinelli said: “I think an entirely new law might be necessary.”
Cuccinelli also suggested a few alternatives to the Affordable Care Act that he says will lower the cost of healthcare for all Americans.
“If we knocked those barriers down, then I could buy it anywhere, and all the Virginia companies would have to compete with all the other companies in all the other 49 states,” Cuccinelli said.
“Make people equal to corporations in the tax treatment of our healthcare and health insurance. Companies get a tax break for providing their employees health insurance, but we individuals don’t get a tax break for providing it for ourselves. That’s ludicrous,” Cuccinelli told Newsmax.
It was “humbling to sit inside the Supreme Court and listen as history was being made,” he said. “I have never, ever been involved in anything, and probably never will be involved in anything where so much is at stake relative to our country.”
Cuccinelli, who recently filed his paperwork to run for governor next year, said he will focus his efforts this year on making sure the Republican nominee for president wins Virginia. He also plans to ensure that a Republican candidate defeats Democrat Tim Kaine in the commonwealth’s U.S. Senate race before he gears up his own campaign after the election in November.
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