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Supreme Court Says No To Fast-Tracking Obamacare Decision; Pushes It Back Until Election Is Over

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The Supreme Court has decided they will not take up a challenge to Obamacare, opting instead to wait until after the 2020 presidential election is over before making any kind of decision on the issue.

Part of the reason for the delay is that it removes pressure from Republicans and the current administration to cook up a backup proposal for the law.

Here’s more from the Washington Examiner:

The timeline removes the immediate threat that the whole law will be struck down, including its popular rules prohibiting insurers from turning away the sick, allowing President Trump to focus his attacks on Democratic proposals such as “Medicare for all.” It will also make it more difficult for Democrats to run on protecting Obamacare, a political strategy that has proved advantageous to them in the Trump era.

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The case in question, Texas v. Azar, is the result of a lawsuit by Republican state officials who said that Obamacare must be struck down on the grounds that it lost a critical component when the 2017 GOP tax overhaul zeroed out its fine on the uninsured. Republicans, who had the support of the Trump administration, said the fine had been central to Obamacare and that the rest of its provisions would not work and should not stand without it.

Judge Reed O’Connor, who was appointed by President George W. Bush, agreed with the GOP states, but the case was appealed to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. On Dec. 18, the appellate judges ruled 2-1 that the health insurance mandate was unconstitutional but that the rest of the law needed further analysis by the lower courts to see whether some parts could be separated out and others could not.

Liberal states that are defending Obamacare had urged the Supreme Court to take up the case this term, saying that leaving it undecided left too much uncertainty for patients and healthcare providers. Several medical and consumer groups, including AARP and the American Diabetes Association, agreed.

But the Trump administration and Republican state officials who want to see all of Obamacare thrown out by the Supreme Court said they wanted the justices to wait until the lower courts finish litigating on the case. It’s unusual for the Supreme Court to take up cases before they move through lower courts.

The best solution to Obamacare is one that involves more of the free market system, which means getting rid of restrictions that prevent people from buying insurance coverage across state lines, decreasing competition.

Increasing that competition will naturally drive the prices down over time, which means people will have greater access to health care at more affordable prices. This seems like a clear win-win, but since this solution decreases the power of the federal government, they aren’t exactly big fans of it.

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Florida’s Top Doc Removed from Meeting Over Mask Refusal

He was following the science, though…

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When it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have often heard the mantra “follow the science”, repeated ad nauseam by any number of doctors, epidemiologists, and experts.  This is because COVID-19, like other viruses, behaves in a predictable and distinct way, an die can use math to understand the true nature of our risks, and to a fairly accurate degree.

But there are some who wish to ignore the science, and instead create arbitrary rules and regulations that don’t conform to the advice of the experts.

This sentiment turned downright silly in Florida this week, after one of the state’s leading medical experts was removed from a meeting for not wearing a mask.

Florida’s top health official was asked to leave a meeting after refusing to wear a mask at the office of a state senator who told him she had a serious medical condition, officials have confirmed.

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Florida Senate leader Wilton Simpson, a Republican, sent a memo to senators Saturday regarding the incident at the office of Democratic state Sen. Tina Polsky, asking visitors at the building to be respectful with social interactions. Polsky, who represents parts of Broward and Palm Beach counties, had not yet made public her breast cancer diagnosis.

Polsky told The Associated Press about the tense exchange with state Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo that was first reported by the news site Florida Politics. She said Ladapo and two aides were offered masks and asked to wear them when they arrived for the Wednesday meeting. She did not tell him she had breast cancer, but said she had a serious condition.

Ladado suggested that the meeting could take place outside if it would make Polsky more comfortable, but she refused.

This begs the obvious question: If Ladapo is following the science, as he most certainly is, who is anyone to tell him he’s wrong?  This is the premiere expert on Florida’s coronavirus situation, after all.

 

When it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have often heard the mantra “follow the science”, repeated ad nauseam by any number of doctors, epidemiologists, and experts.  This is because COVID-19, like other viruses, behaves in a predictable and distinct way, an die can use math to understand the true nature of our risks, and to a fairly accurate degree. But there are some who wish to ignore the science, and instead create arbitrary rules and regulations that don’t conform to the advice of the experts. This sentiment turned downright silly in Florida this week, after one of the state’s leading medical experts was removed from a meeting for not wearing a mask. Florida’s top health official was asked to leave a meeting after refusing to wear a mask at the office of a state senator who told him she had a serious medical condition, officials have confirmed. Florida Senate leader Wilton Simpson, a Republican, sent a memo to senators Saturday regarding the incident at the office of Democratic state Sen. Tina Polsky, asking visitors at the building to be respectful with social interactions. Polsky, who represents parts of Broward and Palm Beach counties, had not yet made public her breast cancer diagnosis. Polsky told The Associated Press about the tense exchange with state Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo that was first reported by the news site Florida Politics. She said Ladapo and two aides were offered masks and asked to wear them when they arrived for the Wednesday meeting. She did not tell him she had breast cancer, but said she had a serious condition. Ladado suggested that the meeting could take place outside if it would make Polsky more comfortable, but she refused. This begs the obvious question: If Ladapo is following the science, as he most certainly is,…

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Crew of Alec Baldwin Film Walked Off Set Over Safety Fears Hours Before Fatality

WHOA!

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While the fatal shooting of a Hollywood cinematographer has been deemed an accident by those involved, there appears to have been a pattern of negligence on-set, leading up to the incident.

Alec Baldwin last week discharged a “prop” firearm in the direction of crew members on the set of his film “Rust”, and, somehow, a live round had been loaded into the weapon.  The shot killed one member of the production staff and wounded another.

As it turns out, crew members were already concerned about the way in which the weapons were being handled.

The 24-year-old head armorer in charge of guns on the Alec Baldwin film where cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was tragically shot and killed on Thursday had admitted she wasn’t sure she was ready for the job in an interview before filming started.

‘I almost didn’t take the job because I wasn’t sure if I was ready, but doing it, it went really smoothly,’ Hannah Gutierrez-Reed said in a podcast interview last month after leading the firearms department for The Old Way, starring Nicolas Cage – her first time as head armorer.

And that’s not all:

It comes as crew on the film revealed they walked off set hours before the fatal accident over safety fears after firearms were accidentally discharged three times – including once by Baldwin’s stunt double who had been told the gun was not loaded, and twice in a closed cabin.

A search warrant released Friday said that Gutierrez-Reed laid out three prop guns on a cart outside the filming location, and first assistant director Dave Halls grabbed the gun from the cart and brought it inside to Baldwin, unaware that it was loaded with live rounds.

‘Cold gun!’ shouted Halls before handing the gun to Baldwin, using the phrase to signal to cast and crew that the gun was safe to fire for the scene, the warrant said.

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The investigation into the incident is ongoing, and there is the potential for someone to be charged in the case still.

While the fatal shooting of a Hollywood cinematographer has been deemed an accident by those involved, there appears to have been a pattern of negligence on-set, leading up to the incident. Alec Baldwin last week discharged a “prop” firearm in the direction of crew members on the set of his film “Rust”, and, somehow, a live round had been loaded into the weapon.  The shot killed one member of the production staff and wounded another. As it turns out, crew members were already concerned about the way in which the weapons were being handled. The 24-year-old head armorer in charge of guns on the Alec Baldwin film where cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was tragically shot and killed on Thursday had admitted she wasn’t sure she was ready for the job in an interview before filming started. ‘I almost didn’t take the job because I wasn’t sure if I was ready, but doing it, it went really smoothly,’ Hannah Gutierrez-Reed said in a podcast interview last month after leading the firearms department for The Old Way, starring Nicolas Cage – her first time as head armorer. And that’s not all: It comes as crew on the film revealed they walked off set hours before the fatal accident over safety fears after firearms were accidentally discharged three times – including once by Baldwin’s stunt double who had been told the gun was not loaded, and twice in a closed cabin. A search warrant released Friday said that Gutierrez-Reed laid out three prop guns on a cart outside the filming location, and first assistant director Dave Halls grabbed the gun from the cart and brought it inside to Baldwin, unaware that it was loaded with live rounds. ‘Cold gun!’ shouted Halls before handing the gun to Baldwin, using the phrase to signal to cast and…

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