Last week, voters in Missouri had a chance to voice their opinion on health reform. It seems that their opinion isn’t too high on the new law. In a special ballot measure, more than 70% of voters were in favor of barring the new federal requirement that all individuals must purchase health insurance starting in 2014. But the vote is likely more about sending a message than it is about changing the law, since a federal requirement generally trumps a state law.
The Missouri vote comes on the heels of a key court ruling in Virginia that will allow the Republican attorney general there to challenge the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act. This hasn’t been a good couple of weeks for the Obama administration when it comes to health reform. But the real test of the laws popularity won’t come from the courts or a single state referendum. It’s likely to come in November when voters across the country judge incumbent members of Congress at least in part on their role in enacting health reform.
Check out this week’s edition of the Policy & Practice podcast for more on the political ups and downs surrounding health reform. And stay with us throughout the fall as we follow how the new health reform law is leaving its mark on the campaign trail.
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— Mary Ellen Schneider (on Twitter @MaryEllenNY)