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How you don't -- to say that things have calmed down just a bit from last Thursday's Supreme Court decision to uphold the individual mandate.
Which of course requires all Americans to buy health care insurance.
But one top voice of the industry changed his tune he wrote in the Wall Street Journal op that on June 17.
Called why I no longer support the health insurance mandate an and it he said.
Insurance does not work if you only pay two months of premiums and receive hundreds of thousands of dollars of health care.
This is the equivalent.
Of getting a free ride.
What makes -- particularly interesting is that he was one of the original champions of the individual mandate until recently joining us now in a Fox Business exclusive report beach Florida.
-- Ron Williams he's the former chairman and CEO of Aetna and sits on the president's management advisory board.
Well I'm still contributing very much to helping me bring business best practices to the federal government in my role on that board Yeltsin -- facility here.
You were the insurance industry's most visible CEO on Capitol Hill during the debate on Health Care Reform one of the president's champions of getting the millions of uninsured Americans covered.
You should before the decision you believed it would be struck down that prediction was wrong do you still stand by your reversal and why.
Let me explain that I have long been an advocate.
Of getting everyone covered I think as a country we have moral obligation to make certain that every one.
Does have access to health care services.
And I actually still believe that a mandate can in fact work I think my objection is articulated in my op -- -- Was really to the notion that you could justify the legislation through the commerce clause.
Because as a private citizen and I'm not an attorney it seemed to me that if the commerce clause was a basis for justification.
There was really no limit to what private citizens could be made to do.
I articulated in the editorials that I thought the tax clause was a much stronger basis Ford.
But I did not believe that the legislation was.
Being presented as a tax I think the Supreme Court was very generous in -- interpretation.
And I think we are where we are and we need to get back to the basics of how to -- Implement the path to getting everyone access to health care and really focus on the real issue which is quality and affordability of health care services.
One of the points OK see you were right then because it was looked upon by the Supreme Court and Justice Roberts as that tax portion of it so we shifted to that but.
What are the points you made was that the people would be simply required to by two months in advance and then get hundreds of thousands of dollars in coverage.
Listen that even just a little bit better I think it's a perfect solution but.
You're just walking in the hospitals -- at the worst possible point of their health care problems.
And getting hundreds of thousands of dollars of health care without having even paid one or two months been at some point.
Why were all of us bearing the burden of people who refuse to even forked out a single dollar for their own coverage.
I think we have to recognize that we do have a moral obligation to make certain that everyone has access to health care services.
We also need a mechanism for people who can afford to pay which is not to pay.
Most of those people who really we're we're going into the emergency room with the last minute.
Did not have an access to health care coverage that we should also remember that ten million of those people were eligible for Medicaid.
But we simply didn't find an and -- them in the Medicaid program in the state in which they live.
You've testified a lot in advance of all of this.
Did you know see the light that you eventually became the sort of accustomed to seeing right as he wrote that -- bed.
At the time that you're testifying before congress meeting with the president supporting him in pushing for everybody to buy -- on healthcare but at the same time and this is where some people look at it and say.
It's a little hypocritical of -- -- and that was that you were saying stay away from the government option.
That so called government option that would have competed with the private health care companies selects of Aetna.
-- -- stay away from that the president did and the congress did it and and now -- against what was originally thought of or MI misinterpreting it.
Yeah I think you misunderstanding I continue to be supportive of the notion of an individual mandate.
I actually think it works better at the state level because I think you get more experimentation the citizens of Massachusetts chose to have a mandate that's just fine.
I do believe also that if we have a mandate and we do want to tax people that we should just call -- -- tax and describe it for what it is and not.
Try to wordsmith that description of it if you pay into the IRS by my measure its attack.
-- and that's what the Supreme Court decided.
What in the end.
-- first thought have you spoken to the president and if so what would you say to him.
And do you expect that he'll be angry about this.
Well bust was because president first I would say -- congratulations.
And I think it is a real win for America and the citizens that the Supreme Court.
In my opinion was generous in its interpretation.
And treated it as -- -- I thought the legislative history seem clear to me and in the public statements where we are all quite familiar -- I think they found a way to justify his attacks I think it's terrific.
That we -- -- a access.
And a path to begin to get people covered.
But we shouldn't lose sight of the real issues which are really affordability.
We're spending two point seven trillion dollars on health care in ten years will spend two trillion dollars more.
We have to have a way to make the health system more affordable so that we really can provide access we're up against a break but I have to ask you Mitt Romney who will of course face off against the president for the election said.
This will bankrupt our country in -- health care do you agree.
I believe that unless we find a way to reduce the rate of increase in health care it will ultimately.
Cause a country serious sanctions he was saying this as in what is now approved.
The individual mandate -- procrastination I was -- true.
I would simply leave it to the politicians I would say broadly speaking the rate of increase in health care is unsustainable.
We cannot have something where we're spending 17% of GDP.
Going to 22 within about ten years we can't spend 22% of our GDP on health care we won't have any money left for education.
And for other services at a critical of our citizens Ron Williams thank you very much for joining us Ron is the former head of Aetna and keep us posted -- when you -- speak to the president will see what happens thank you.
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