If the Affordable Care Act gets defunded, then what will actually happen with it.

Will parts like the mandate requiring you to get insurance and all the laws about how insurance companies do business no longer have the force of law?

Or will the ACA just be unable to pay for things like subsidies.

  • 1
    In practice defunding a law is inferior to repealing a law. The next opportunity for one party to hold both chambers of Congress is the next midterm election on November 4th, 2014. Republicans shall need 5 seats to gain the Senate and Democrats shall need 19 seats to gain the House. Note due to gerrymandering, malapportionment and FPTP - the actual vote swing required could be quite different. Commented Oct 17, 2013 at 6:25

1 Answer 1


Discretionary sending in the ACA would not be spent, but the individual mandate and other mandatory spending would be unaffected.

Discretionary funding may be affected by defunding the ACA. This amounts to $100 billion over the next 10 years.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated that ACA’s discretionary spending provisions, if fully funded by future appropriations acts, would result in appropriations of almost $100 billion over the period FY2012-FY2021.11 However, much of that funding—about $85 billion—would be for three programs that were in existence prior to, and whose funding was reauthorized by, ACA; namely, the National Health Service Corps, the federal health centers program, and the Indian Health Service (IHS). --Discretionary Spending in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) (pg. 7)

Mandatory funding would be unaffected by defunding the ACA. Subsidies for individuals and families on the health exchanges would be unaffected.

Health insurance exchange grants. Appropriates annually an amount (as determined by the Secretary) necessary to award exchange planning and establishment grants to states. No grants may be awarded after January 1, 2015, by which time exchanges must be self-sustaining. [CMS/CCIIO; CFDA 93.525] --(Appropriations and Fund Transfers in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) (pg. 12))

Laws that do not concern funding would be unaffected by defunding of the ACA. If you break laws defined in sections of the ACA related to individuals or businesses, you would be subject to the fines or penalties there in.

  • So do these Health insurance grants fall in the un-effected or the effected catagory? Commented Oct 18, 2013 at 14:19

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