ObamaCare is upheld! The individual mandate, the pre-existing conditions, the expansion of Medicaid, the 26-year-old children, everything in The Affordable Care Act of 2010 appears to be upheld.
The decision means the historic overhaul will continue to go into effect over the next several years, affecting the way that countless Americans receive and pay for their personal medical care. The ruling also handed Obama a campaign-season victory in rejecting arguments that Congress went too far in requiring most Americans to have health insurance or pay a penalty.
According to the Associated Press, Chief Justice John Roberts announced the court’s judgment that allows the law to go forward with its aim of covering more than 30 million uninsured Americans.
The court found problems with the law’s expansion of Medicaid, but even there said the expansion could proceed as long as the federal government does not threaten to withhold states’ entire Medicaid allotment if they don’t take part in the law’s extension.
The court’s four liberal justices, Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, joined Roberts in the outcome.
Justices Samuel Alito, Anthony Kennedy, Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas dissented.
Opponents of the Affordable Care Act, such as Mitt Romney, say it should be replaced with a state-by-state approach. Romney’s home state, Massachusetts, is the pioneer – Romney signed a 2006 law that has extended coverage to nearly all residents.
Regardless of what opponents may say, many doctors will applaud this legislation, which hopefully encourages the most cantankerous patients to seek out regular visits.
More than anything, this is a win for President Obama’s lawyers and public relations team, who found a way to convince the Supreme Court of their plan but still haven’t clearly laid out in plain language why their plan will help people far more than it hurts any American.
Additionally, health insurers and hospitals will have an easier time justifying their books to stockholders who have been nervous about whether or not that the individual mandate would be upheld. Effectively, seemingly healthy people will help balance the folks who pre-existing conditions — people who have historically been seen as metaphorical lepers to health care profit margins.
Remember, in less partisan times, both parties have favored most of these measures.