Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is rooting for the nation’s high court to strike down controversial federal health care reforms this week. But the state is ready to begin doing the U.S. government’s bidding if all or portions of the law remain intact, he said.
Officials in the Volunteer State have already begun the preliminary steps of implementing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, although Haslam and other GOP leaders are hoping the U.S. Supreme Court will find it unconstitutional. Haslam’s other hope is that presumptive GOP Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney wins election and endeavors to roll back the law’s provisions.
“If they don’t strike it down, we’re on that path. Obviously, I’m hoping that they do because I think it saves the state money long term and that will make things easier,” Haslam told reporters after announcing standardized test scores at West End Middle School.
States are required to set up “insurance exchanges,” which are envisioned as online government-controlled “marketplaces” for people to buy health insurance.
Haslam says the state is in a holding pattern where it won’t have to make any further decisions about how to move forward on the exchanges until January when the Legislature reassembles.
“I think we’ve played this right in the sense of being ready either way it goes,” he said.