MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Christmas Eve 2009 was they day when the U.S. Senate passed the Affordable Care Act along party lines; Democrats for it and Republicans against it. Four years later—and a lot of political fighting—the same is still true.
“Reminds me of when my kids were little and they used to throw a tantrum when they didn’t get their way. The difference is that my kids eventually realized that we’d settled the matter and it was time to move on,” said Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Shultz.
Republicans haven’t moved on and both parties have squared-off over and over again.
“This is a disaster all the way around,” said Marco Rubio. “I don’t know of anyone that wants to shutdown the government, the only thing we want to shutdown is Obama Care.”
Professor Charles Zelden from Nova Southeastern University says that this is nothing new—it’s happened in the past with Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.
“The Republicans don’t like this because they’re afraid it’s going to work, it will give political advantage to the Democrats,” said Zelden.
“Each time there is an expansion, starting with Social Security in the late 1930s. There are people who claim it’s horrible it’s un-American it will destroy liberty, it will destroy freedom, it’s socialism, it is going to take us to a horrible place. And then people begin to see the effects of it and say ‘hey this is good for me’ and all of a sudden now it becomes popular at which point all those people who were attacking it sort of quietly stop attacking it,” said Zelden.
The political division is not just in Congress, Republicans in the Florida Legislature refused to acknowledge the ACA and passed on 51 billion in federal money to cover about a million low-income Florida residents.
Democrats in protest brought the last days of the session to a halt using stall tactics leading to further hostility between the two parties.
When Governor Rick Scott was asked if he planned to stand in the way or embrace the ACA and move further, he responded, “Well look it’s the law of the land, so while it’s the law of the land, I’m going to continue to do my job.”
Governor Rick Scott has held the line with the Republican party recently trying to block navigators, people trained to help you sign up for health insurance. He claimed it had to do with privacy concerns.
“Even Obama administration is acknowledging there’s an issue so that’s my concern. Everything else you have to call the Department of Health.”
It’s likely the politics of healthcare will have lasting effects. If the Affordable Care Act Works works or fails it could certainly affect upcoming elections.