Rick Scott and Florida Republicans Backing Down on Obamacare Opposition
Not only did Floridians vote to reelect President Obama on Tuesday, they also, by a wider margin, voted down a proposed state constitutional amendment that sought, in theory at least, to limit the effects of Obamacare in Florida.
Dejected, Rick Scott, the former health care CEO, is now backing down on his opposition to the federal law.
A year before his election, Scott founded Conservative for Patients' Rights, a group that sought to fight what it perceived as Obama's march towards "socialized medicine."
Scott's opposition to the Affordable Healthcare Act became one of the central tenants of his campaign alongside his promise to bring Arizona-style immigration laws to Florida.
Left with last week's double electoral loss, Scott and the state GOP are backing down.
"I don't like this law," incoming Senate President Don Gaetz told The Miami Herald, "but this is the law, and I believe I have a constitutional obligation to carry it out."
"Just saying 'no' is not an answer," Scott said in a statement last Friday. "We need to focus on how Obamacare affects each of our families. Will it increase the cost of health care for our families? Will it impact the quality of health care for our families? Will it impact Floridians' access to our health-care system?"
So Florida Republicans will no longer stick their fingers in their ears and chant "lalalala I can't hear you" when it comes to enacting the law in the state.
There still may be attempts to weaken the law in Florida, but the supremacy clause in that pesky old U.S. Constitution may limit that.
Newly elected Republican Congressman Tray Radel, who will replace Connie Mack in the House, is betting on the law to be a disaster.
"I think more and more Democrats, specifically in the Senate, are going to see the negative impact of Obamacare and there are areas we can work on together, at the minimum, to repeal parts of it," he said.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Miami New Times' biggest stories.