ObamaCare is coming fully to state and federal agency’s near you in 2014, the Supreme Court on Thursday ruled in favor of the controversial plan which calls for an individual tax mandate for anyone who does not buy into medical insurance coverage.
The court upheld the Affordable Care Act with just one Medicaid-related exception.
According to SCOTUSblog Chief Justice John Roberts’ vote “saved” ObamaCare as he slipped over tot he left and upheld the individual mandate as constitutional with a 5-4 court ruling.
The only exception according to the justices’ decision was that “the federal government’s power to terminate states’ Medicaid funds is narrowly read.”
In issuing its ruling the Supreme Court’s justices wrote:
“Our precedent demonstrates that Congress had the power to impose the exaction in Section 5000A under the taxing power, and that Section 5000A need not be read to do more than impose a tax. This is sufficient to sustain it.”
While the full impact of the Affordable Health Care act will not be implemented until 2014 the Supreme Court could have killed nearly the entire purpose of the act had they decided the individual mandate was unlawful.
The SCOTUSblog broke the court’s decision down into plain English:
There were not five votes to uphold it on the ground that Congress could use its power to regulate commerce between the states to require everyone to buy health insurance. However, five Justices agreed that the penalty that someone must pay if he refuses to buy insurance is a kind of tax that Congress can impose using its taxing power. That is all that matters. Because the mandate survives, the Court did not need to decide what other parts of the statute were constitutional, except for a provision that required states to comply with new eligibility requirements for Medicaid or risk losing their funding. On that question, the Court held that the provision is constitutional as long as states would only lose new funds if they didn’t comply with the new requirements, rather than all of their funding.
Are you surprised by the Supreme Courts decision?