12/14/10 — Health care step: Court's ruling is a first step, with a long, long way to go

View Archive

Health care step: Court's ruling is a first step, with a long, long way to go

The news that a Virginia court has said that the provision ordering individual Americans to buy health insurance might be unconstitutional does not undo all the damage done by the Obama administration's health reform bill.

And the continued challenges to the measure in court are a long way from being resolved.

But the news this week of the first victory suggests that perhaps there is more to look at when it comes to the future of the massive health care reform bill put in place earlier this year.

And for many Americans, especially those whose health care costs are already on the rise because of the fears generated by the provisions included in the measure, a decision could not be more timely or necessary.

There is no question that there is a reason to be concerned about the costs of health care and health insurance. To pretend there is not a reason to look more closely at this issue is just wrong.

But what bothers most people about the health care reform effort is that it was passed with many, many legislators admitting they did not read or understand its provisions -- and that it is an ill-formed measure with plenty of potential landmines.

The court's decision is not going to magically transform the health care bill into meaningful and well-thought-out reform. And this victory does not mean we are done talking about health care.

What it does is set the stage for a new discussion and a new look at an issue that is important to many Americans and one that it is time legislators address.

So, step one is now complete.

Now, let the discussions begin.

Congress can just add it to its to-do list for January 2011. And this time, we expect them to pay really close attention -- and to get the job done.

Published in Editorials on December 14, 2010 10:31 AM