Individual Mandate | St. Louis Public Radio

Individual Mandate

Rachel Bingham, a single mother, earns too much to qualify for Medicaid, but too little to afford health insurance for herself and her daughter.
Durrie Bouscaren | St. Louis Public Radio

While rolling silverware at the City Diner in St. Louis, waitress Rachel Bingham recalled her attempt to buy health insurance for herself and her five-year-old daughter last year. She said when she signed on to, she realized she couldn't afford it. 

"They were wanting $231 a month. That was not doable," Bingham said. She’s been paying out-of-pocket for doctor’s appointments ever since: $60 for primary care, $200 for the dentist. Luckily, her daughter’s a healthy kid, she said.

With the United States Supreme Court's decision on healthcare expected to come on Thursday, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon broke with his party on Monday over a key part of the legislation.

Speaking with reporters in St. Louis, Governor Nixon sounded more like a Republican when asked about the impending decision.

Referring to the Affordable Care Act as the “Washington Healthcare Law” Nixon spoke out against the key ingredient of President Obama’s signature legislation—the so-called individual mandate requiring people to purchase health insurance.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 14, 2012 - Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has just announced that he has submitted two "amicus briefs" in the cases now before the U.S. Supreme Court that challenge the constitutionality of the federal health-insurance law, most notably the mandate that most Americans buy insurance.

(via Flickr/Jennifer Boriss)

Missouri has received a federal grant of close to $21 million to help build an online health insurance exchange.