Meet the Press   |  July 07, 2013

What is the current state of health reform?

A panel of journalists discuss the fallout from delaying a key part of Obama’s health care law.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> who gets a paycheck in this country understands one thing, that there's a new line item and it says medicare surtax. so the tax part's working. you're paying more taxes for obama care. that part's working. it makes a lot of people mad.

>> yeah, look, but let's back up for a second. this fight really is wholly political. obama care is not going to be repealed. they're not going to have majorities in either house to repeal it and in fact president obama would never sign that. soilt's going to be messy. it's going to be politically contentious. but in the end it's going to work out the way it works out. and, you know, if it's a big bust, then there's political problems down the road. but it's going to happen.

>> but for it to work, the exchanges have to take place, and state after state now, run by republican governors and republican legislatures are trying to roll back or have rolled back or saying that won't participate. and you have to have a certain coherent whole for this to work economically. you can't nibble away at it. in fact, these are big bites out of it. i think also in the reporting losing that mandate is such a concession, it may not be the biggest piece of it, but it's a concession to the critics that something needs to be delayed, that something's not working. i think that's a politically damaging moment.

>> they'll admit that the business mandate was poorly written, that they normally would have sought a legislative fix, what e.j. was talking about. but they can't get a legislative fix out of the house. but the bigger issue here i think for the administration is that they don't seem -- they've got to build all this, they know that -- they thought that republicans after the election would basically concede this is going to be the law of the land and they would be in the mode of, okay, we he'll try and fix it, try to get as much as we can to change it in ways that we think business wants to change or change in ways we think will make it a little less bureaucratic and things like that. but they're not getting them. you could argue that there are some republicans that are trying to sabotage the law, that they're hoping to not get it off the ground and then they can suddenly make the case, see, we have to get rid of it. and they've got some state governors that are openly trying to sabotage it. look what mcconnell and cornyn did. that was a shakedown. that was a threatening leader by the two leaders of the senate republican committee saying if you help them try to enact this law of the land , be careful, there's going to be political repercussions.

>> they would say -- the republicans would say we're sabotaging a goldberg device that wouldn't work any way. surely there is republican opposition, but this is an incredibly complex law doing a lot of things it probably shouldn't do. we probably shouldn't have employer insurance at all.

>> chuck is right, the nfl thing was really unseemly and i don't think they needed to go there. but what you do have if the states don't participate is that the federal government steps in and creates those marketplaces. that's also going to be an interesting challenge. can the feds show that, a, maybe a national law would have been better in the first place, all these concessions to states' rights were an effort to get it passed.