I’d like to thank Rand Paul for fighting the misnamed Patriot Act, in the teeth of his party’s leadership. Yes, there is room for public debate among thoughtful conservatives about where and how to draw the line for the NSA and for other government agencies tracking possible terrorists. But it’s thanks in no small part to Paul that we’re having that spirited public debate, and that the cause of limited government remains such a prominent part of that conversation. Paul’s filibuster reminded me of candidate Ronald Reagan at his best, fighting uphill against the pro-choice, pro-detente GOP elites. It was what historians call a “presidential moment.”
It abolishes the individual and employer mandates, caps per capita spending on Medicaid, blocks federal funds from going to insurance plans that cover abortion, and lets interested states attain freedom from some of Obamacare’s regulations. Some of those states could use that freedom to create markets in which people outside of Medicare, Medicaid, and employer-based coverage would finally be enabled to buy cheap, renewable catastrophic-insurance policies.