Among the many politicians who rushed out statements opposing or supporting the Supreme Court’s decision that President Obama’s health care legislation was constitutional, Mayor Michael Bloomberg was not among them. On John Gambling’s radio show today, Mr. Bloomberg explained why he’s “not sure if after all the yelling and screaming and all the politics around this, there’s really any great change.”
“Good or bad, at least it takes away the argument that this law was unconstitutional,” he began to describe his reaction to the ruling. “It does not mean that future governments in Washington can’t change the law or repeal it or something.”
He proceeded to argue that everyone receives health care if they seriously need it, regardless of insurance.
“We are going to provide healthcare for everybody, that’s what gets lost in this,” he contended. “If you are really sick and you show up at a hospital in New York City — and I assume everyplace else in the country — you’re going to get treated, and somebody has to pay for that. You can have everybody pay for it, you do that through, let’s say, the tax system. … But we’re all going to pay for it, and whether we’ll pay for it one way or pay for it another way, is the argument that sort of gets lost. ”
“What are we going to call the allocation?” he continued later to explain this funding mechanism. “A lot of it is verbiage. You know, we say, ‘Another 30 million people covered,’ yes, but in some senses they were probably covered anyways because if they showed up in the emergency room. … It tends to be a lot of young people who get covered all of a sudden who probably don’t go for annual medical checkups and don’t have real medical problems. Or older people who don’t know how to get into the system.”
And to conclude, Mr. Bloomberg rhetorically yawned.
“I’m not sure if after all the yelling and screaming and all the politics around this, there’s really any great change. Congress passed a bill, the president signed it. Questioning whether or not it was constitutional, the Supreme Court looked at it, voted 5-4 yes, end of story. That’s democracy.”