Health BREAKING: Supreme Court Will Not Take Away Health Care From Millions Of Americans
by Tara Culp-Ressler Posted on June 25, 2015 at 10:09 am
By a 6-3 ruling, the Supreme Court decided on Thursday to avoid a major disruption to the insurance market by leaving in place the Affordable Care Act’s current tax subsidies. The decision preserves financial assistance for the Americans purchasing insurance plans through Obamacare’s federally-run marketplaces, effectively maintaining affordable access to health care for millions of people whose coverage was thrown into question by the King v. Burwell case.
“Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them,” the majority opinion concluded.
The closely watched case represents the second time that the Affordable Care Act has withstood a major constitutional challenge. In 2012, the Roberts Court upheld the law’s individual mandate, which paved the way for Obamacare to be implemented on a state level.
Under Obamacare, which marked its five-year anniversary this past spring, the national uninsurance rate has plummeted to record lows. If the justices had ruled in favor of the plaintiffs in King, however, much of that progress would have unraveled.
Based on one line in the law — which suggests that tax subsidies are available to people who are enrolled in a health plan purchased “through an Exchange established by the State” — the King v. Burwell plaintiffs sought to invalidate the financial assistance available to help Americans purchase insurance in 34 states across the country. If they had been successful, an estimated 13 million people would have suddenly been forced to pay for the entire cost of their health care premiums, sending the insurance market into chaos. Experts predicted that millions of consumers would have been unable to afford to the cost of their plans, contributing to a “death spiral” that would make insurance more expensive for everyone.
The Supreme Court’s ruling is welcome news to everyone from health care advocates to state lawmakers to presidential candidates, all of whom were scrambling to figure out what would happen next if Obamacare’s tax subsidies were struck down in most of the country. There has been little evidence that state and federal politicians had much of a back-up plan.
Tags Health Care, Obamacare, Supreme Court
After the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of President Barack Obama’s landmark health insurance law on Thursday, Republican lawmakers in Congress and other conservative leaders were quick to express their anger, calling the ruling “outrageous” and “judicial tyranny.”
Even though the law has now survived two Supreme Court challenges, Republicans quickly shared their reactions to the King v. Burwell decision, which ensured that roughly 6.4 million Americans will get to keep their health care subsidies.
Many of the 13 Republican candidates who have launched their campaigns for the presidency in 2016 issued statements expressing their disappointment and promising to continue fighting the law. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said the court “erred” in “forcing Obamacare on the American people,” while former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said he is disappointed but the “decision is not the end of the fight against Obamacare.” Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee called the ruling “judicial tyranny” and asked Congress to “repeal the nightmare of Obamacare.” Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry said he disagreed with the ruling but “it was never up to the Supreme Court to save us from Obamacare.” Carly Fiorina called the ruling “outrageous” and said the “deeply flawed law” needs to be repealed.
I thought Obama said health care costs were going down because of it. Where are those numbers? Also, still too many people not allowed to keep their family doctors and forced into the new pool that is preselected for them.