Scary, Scary IPAB


Americans knew that when they were told that they needed to pass the healthcare law in order to see what was in the healthcare law, we were in for some deep piles of “youknowwhatssits”. Now that the Affordable Care Act has been passed, we are now learning that the healthcare monstrosity has moved into the “just wait a while and you’ll never be able to repeal it” phase. The Obama administration is hoping you’ll just “wait a while” until 2017 and here’s why.

Language within the Affordable Care Act (ACA) created a fifteen member regulatory panel called the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). The President of the United States appoints these members. This regulatory board has been given unprecedented autonomy in its legislative power in that the proposals issued from IPAB must be implemented immediately. If the President and the two chambers of Congress cannot come up with a measure that matches, not revokes or countermands, but matches the “proposal” of IPAB within a severely limited amount of time the edicts-Let’s call them what they are-from IPAB must be immediately implemented by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, according to the language in the ACA.

IPAB effectively bypasses any oversight from Congress and cannot be subjected to a veto from the President. There are no checks and balances; in fact, language in the ACA prevents IPAB from ever being repealed after 2017. The ACA goes even further to state that any ruling from the IPAB after 2017 cannot be altered, challenged, or revoked in any way.

So after you’ve wiped the spittle from off the front of your shirt from screaming and frothing, “How can this happen in the United States!!!” let’s take a step back and discuss how this happened in the United States. The simplest explanation is that the intent from the very infancy of the ACA was to bypass and circumvent the checks and balances our government. Peter Orszag, who was a chief architect for President Obama when ACA was passed, said the reason for the failed implementation of government run healthcare is that there is “too much democracy”. Orszag and the President petitioned the writers of the ACA to create IPAB and insure that it was impervious to the obstructions of government oversight. By severing the panel from a system of checks and balances and filling it with unelected members with no accountability to the public, the ACA has insured that IPAB is a law unto itself.

This secretive but all-powerful order of health regulators invokes images of Tolkien’s Ringwraiths, The Black Riders, bent upon the implementation of their dark agenda at all costs and woe to any that oppose them. In a recent article from the Cato Institute, Diane Cohen and Michael F. Cannon contend that IPAB is indeed independent but “in the worst sense of the word. It wields power independent of Congress, independent of the President, independent of the judiciary, and independent of the will of the people.”

The citizens have no recourse against the rulings of IPAB. They cannot challenge any ruling in a court of law. IPAB has the autonomous power to levy taxes and ration healthcare for US citizens, even if these citizens have private healthcare. In truth, actions from IPAB are not legislative but decrees and edicts, which cannot be questioned.

Our next post will expose how that, without repeal, IPAB has the potential to give one unelected official the unfettered power to levy taxes and regulations, appropriate funds, and to have control over the legislative process. Thankfully Maine’s Congressman Bruce Poliquin has co-sponsored a bill with Congressman David (Phil) Roe of Tennessee to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board. Maine’s Congresswoman Chellie Pingree must join with Congressman Poliquin to repeal this travesty to American freedom. As Cohen and Cannon have warned, IPAB is not just unconstitutional; it is “anti-constitutional.”

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