"The Affordable Care Act's requirement that certain individuals pay a financial penalty for not obtaining health insurance may reasonably be characterized as a tax," Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the ruling. "Because the Constitution permits such a tax, it is not our role to forbid it, or to pass upon its wisdom or fairness."
The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the expansion would have increased Medicaid/CHIP coverage by 16 million people from a baseline of 35 million by 2019 – with a cost to the federal government of $434bn from 2010 to 2019 because of the expanded coverage.
But Thursday’s ruling now settles the big constitutional question once and for all: Congress can require people to have health coverage.
“Following the Supreme Court hearings, I’m a little surprised, but it’s clearly — it will be seen as a big victory for the president,” the News Corp. chairman and CEO said Thursday on Fox News, moments after the highly anticipated decision was read. “They’ll all be doing high-fives at the moment at the White House. But on the other hand, every poll showed it’s not a popular bill, so we’re going to the election and fight it there, I imagine.”
What Americans want is a common-sense, step-by-step approach to health care reform that will protect Americans’ access to the care they need, from the doctor they choose, at a lower cost. Republicans stand ready to work with a president who will listen to the people and will not repeat the mistakes that gave our country ObamaCare.”
Obama's signature legislative achievement stood on the grounds that establishing a penalty for refusing to buy health insurance is tantamount to raising the sort of tax that is within Congress' taxation powers.
Prior to Obamacare’s passage in 2010, Obama denied it was a tax. In September 2009, Obama told ABC News that the law “is absolutely not a tax increase.”
The court’s conversion of the law into a huge tax may also boost the GOP’s ability to persuade voters to back GOP candidates in 2012. The Obamacare tax may amount to $1.7 trillion over a decade, according to a Congressional Budget Office projection.
He also warned, “If you think we’re not paying for this already, think again. This is the part everybody is blowing right past.”
Patrick specifically cited health-care “freeloaders” who show up in emergency rooms to treat minor complaints — costs that are passed along to those scrambling to pay their health insurance.
“Romney will carry on as usual. He’ll say that he’ll do away with all of it once he becomes president, and he’ll push for conservative ideas, like buying insurance across state lines … There is no scramble here … This has been a sensitive issue for two years, and the campaign dealt with it in the primary.”
Seventy-five “percent of the [Obamacare] mandate penalty… falls on Americans earning less than $120,000 a year … [so] President Obama has imposed one of the largest tax hikes in American history on the middle class,” said a statement from the Republican minority of the Senate budget committee.
Twenty-one percent of the tax increase will fall of people who earn just above the poverty level of $11,800 per individual, or $24,000 for a family of four, according to a statement from the committee’s Republicans, who are led by Alabama’s Sen. Jeff Sessions, a staunch opponent of Obamacare and big government policies.
It means that tens of millions of Americans who now have no access to health care coverage, far more than in any other developed country, will no longer have their health and chance for prosperity at permanent terrifying risk.
In a dramatic victory for President Barack Obama, the Supreme Court upheld the 2010 health care law Thursday, preserving Obama’s landmark legislative achievement.
The majority opinion was written by Chief Justice John Roberts, who held that the law was a valid exercise of Congress’s power to tax.
Supreme Court Health Care Ruling: The Mandate Can
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