Viewpoints: Ruling Hands Government ‘A Limitless License To Coerce,’ Decision Will Save Lives
A wide selection of views on the effects of the Supreme Court's health care ruling.
USA Today: Editorial: Supreme Court ObamaCare Ruling Benefits Millions
Amid all the political spin about who won and who lost as a result of Thursday's Supreme Court decision to uphold the 2010 health reform law, it's worth noting up front that the landmark ruling will benefit millions of everyday Americans. Many of the people who will be helped already know exactly how: They have pre-existing medical conditions and can't get insurance. Or they have a desperately sick child, have blown through their insurance policy's lifetime limit and now have enormous bills they can't pay. Or they've fallen seriously ill, only to have their insurance company cancel their coverage on a technicality (6/29).
USA Today: NFIB: Mandate Ends Vital Freedoms
The Supreme Court upheld the health care law, and Americans lost a large measure of the liberty they have always known. The federal government's power to tax is now a limitless license to coerce. ... Congress veered away from affordability and hurtled toward other goals. Thus, small business came to oppose the law. Congress promised cost relief, and the law delivered the opposite. Just months after its passage, the White House warned key supporters to abandon cost-cutting as a talking point. Since then, costs exploded. The law laid heavier burdens on small business than on others (Dan Danner, 6/29).
The Wall Street Journal: The Roberts Rules
Thursday was destined to be an historic day for American liberty, and it was, though the new precedent is grim. The remarkable decision upholding the Affordable Care Act is shot through with confusion—the mandate that's really a tax, except when it isn't, and the government whose powers are limited and enumerated, except when they aren't (6/28).
The Wall Street Journal: A Triumph And Tragedy For The Law
The Supreme Court's ObamaCare decision is both a triumph and a tragedy for our constitutional system. On the plus side, as we have long argued in these pages and in the courts, the justices held that Congress's power to regulate interstate commerce cannot support federal requirements imposed on Americans simply because they exist. The court also ruled that there are limits to Congress's ability to use federal spending to force the states to adopt its preferred policies. However, in upholding ObamaCare's mandate that all Americans buy health insurance as a kind of "tax," the court itself engaged in a quintessentially legislative activity—redrafting the law's unambiguous text. The court struck down ObamaCare as enacted by Congress and upheld a new ObamaCare of its own making (David B. Rivkin Jr and Lee A. Casey, 6/28).
The Wall Street Journal: The Wrong Remedy For Health Care
The American health-care system's principal strength is its ability to produce ever more impressive innovations. The U.S. has no equal in developing new medical technologies, surgical procedures and pharmaceuticals. These extraordinary advances are not the product of government direction but rather the efforts of scientists, investors and entrepreneurs pursuing their individual goals and aspirations in a competitive market system. The Affordable Care Act puts these strengths at risk (John F. Cogan, R. Glenn Hubbard and Daniel P. Kessler, 6/28).
The New York Times: The Real Winners
So the Supreme Court — defying many expectations — upheld the Affordable Care Act, a k a Obamacare. There will, no doubt, be many headlines declaring this a big victory for President Obama, which it is. But the real winners are ordinary Americans — people like you (Paul Krugman, 6/28).
The New York Times: A Moderate Ruling With Risks Ahead
There is no underestimating the importance of the Supreme Court decision upholding most of the health reform law — politically, constitutionally and in terms of its practical effects on the nation and the economy (6/28).
The New York Times: A Pyrrhic Victory
The obvious victor in the Supreme Court’s health care decision was President Obama, who risked vast amounts of political capital to pass the Affordable Care Act. A somewhat more subtle victor, but equally important, was the rule of law more generally: in an era when so many people on the left and right view the justices, and constitutional questions, through the prism of politics, the court today made clear that law matters and that it isn't just politics by other means (Neal K. Katyal, 6/28).
Los Angeles Times: Vindication For 'Obamacare'
The Supreme Court's ruling Thursday upholding President Obama's healthcare reform law wasn't the sort of ringing pronouncement that helps define the contours of government power and individual rights for decades to come. The justices were sharply divided, and Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr.'s controlling opinion reads like an exercise in splitting the baby. But the end result is one that Americans in general, and Californians in particular, should celebrate (6/29).
Los Angeles Times: Healthcare Cluelessness From The Supreme Court's Conservatives
In their dissenting opinion Thursday, four of the Supreme Court's conservative justices wasted little time in revealing their exceedingly narrow view of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The first sentence by Justices Antonin Scalia, Anthony M. Kennedy, Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr. reads, "Congress has set out to remedy the problem that the best health care is beyond the reach of many Americans who cannot afford it." Umm, no, that's not what Congress set out to do with the healthcare reform law. The goal was not just to increase access to care but also to improve quality, promote efficiency, shift incentives so providers and patients have a mutual interest in wellness, and slow the growth of costs (Jon Healey, 6/28).
Los Angeles Times: The Court Saved My Lifeline
Not to be overly dramatic, but for me the Supreme Court decision on the Affordable Care Act was a matter of life and death. Because the law was largely upheld, I will be able to continue receiving treatment for breast cancer (Spike Dolomite Ward, 6/29).
The Washington Post: A Ruling That's Good For The Country
The Supreme Court's 5 to 4 decision upholding the core of the Affordable Care Act is good news for the court and the country. Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. was statesmanlike in choosing to side with four more liberal justices in finding that the law’s most controversial provision, the mandate that individuals obtain health insurance, was a constitutional exercise of Congress’s power "to lay and collect taxes." That solution allows the main provisions of the law to take effect. Even more important, it is respectful, as the court should be, of congressional authority and the democratic process that underlies it (6/28).
Philadelphia Inquirer: Supreme Court Saves The Day - As Well As Lives
It may not have been his intention — in fact, we're pretty confident that it wasn't — but in providing the deciding vote in Thursday's Supreme Court decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act, Chief Justice John Roberts has saved millions of Americans from dying before their time (6/29).
Boston Globe: Health Care Ruling Aids Obama In Three Ways
However, in justifying the mandate under the taxing power, Roberts found a far more limited construction than that followed by the liberal justices, which also restricts Congress’s power to act under the Commerce Clause. This latter power has been used to justify social welfare laws for generations and was supposed to justify the Affordable Care Act. That a majority of the court ruled that itisn’t a valid justification is an important precedent because it appears to limit federal power. Over the long term, this bodes well for conservatives eager to constrain the further growth of government. But Republicans aren't taking much solace in the decision because most of them are focused on the near term (Joshua Green, 6/29).
iWatch News: Obamacare A Blessing For Millions Of Real Americans
As I was waiting anxiously for today’s Supreme Court decision, I knew there was a man in Colorado I’d met on the first anniversary of the Affordable Care Act who was likely far more anxious than I was. ... That man was among millions of people in this country who insurance companies have labeled "uninsurable," meaning they could not buy insurance coverage at any price because of pre-existing conditions. One of the most important provisions of the law that was upheld by the Court today was the one that will take effect on January 1, 2014, the one that will at long last make it illegal for insurers to refuse to sell coverage to people who have been sick in the past (Wendell Potter, 6/28).
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Supreme Court Ruling Means A Healthier America
But the bottom line today is this: The essential provisions of the Affordable Care Act stand, and the United States will be healthier for it…. Forget about repeal or waiting for repeal. What's important now is to move forward in a bipartisan effort on two equally important fronts: implementing the law fairly and stemming the rise in health care costs (6/28).
Fox News: Beyond The Obamacare Debate -- Why Does Health Care Cost So Much?
Health care spending is so far out of control that not only individuals and families, but the entire economy is buckling under the strain. General Motors spends so much money for its employees' health care that Warren Buffet has called the corporation "a health and benefits company with an auto company attached." Each year, General Motors, like Ford and other U.S. automakers, pays more than $1,500 in health care costs for every car they make. ...After adjusting for inflation, we now spend as much on health care every ten days as we did in the entire year of 1950 (John Robbins and Ocean Robbins, 6/28).
Des Moines Register: Health Care Ruling Was A 'Win' For Americans
In a 5-4 ruling, (the Court) upheld the law, including the controversial requirement that all Americans purchase health insurance. Yes, that is a "win" for Democrats and President Barack Obama. It legitimizes reform they worked for more than a year to craft. But the win in this case is really for the American people (6/28).
Health Policy Solutions (a Colo. news service): Questions Remain On Implementation Of ACA In Colorado
The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and especially the individual mandate provision stands to affect Colorado’s health care system – and hundreds of thousands of the state’s residents – on a variety of fronts. The Colorado Health Institute estimates that about a half-million uninsured Coloradans will gain health insurance by 2016 (Michelle Lueck 6/28).
Kansas City Star: A Winning Health Care Ruling For All Americans
With a historic and just decision from the U.S. Supreme Court, the nation has moved a giant step closer to a health care system that will work for all Americans. By ruling the individual insurance mandate constitutional under the taxing authority of Congress, the court preserved the delicately balanced structure of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (6/28).
San Jose Mercury News: Supreme Court Health Care Ruling Gives Hope To Millions
The United States is a step closer to joining the rest of the developed world in making health care accessible to most or all citizens, thanks to Thursday's welcome ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court. And in writing the opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts took a step toward restoring the integrity of the nation's highest court, which, until this case, was looking more and more like an arm of the Republican Party (6/28).
Sacramento Bee: Health Reform Is One Step In Right Direction
The Supreme Court did the wise thing by upholding the Affordable Care Act. While the federal health reform law alone will not remedy all our health care system's ills, it takes significant steps in the right direction. With the court's affirmation, the public and private sectors must now work together to make the law effective (Bruce Bodaken, 6/29).
CNN Money: Beyond ACA: Health Care Reform For Entrepreneurs
The Supreme Court today affirmed the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act. With that uncertainty behind us, I feel it's crucial for entrepreneurs to focus their energies on uniting around a single healthcare reform that will create jobs and facilitate greater innovation in America (Alex Meshkin, 6/28).
Arizona Republic: So, We'll Be Penalized With Higher Taxes
The decision affirms that ... President Obama signed a health-care law that levies a substantial, new set of taxes that, according to congressional estimates, perhaps 75 percent of people earning less than $200,000 per year will pay. If the muddled, often perplexing reasoning of Chief Justice John Roberts provides any satisfaction for the act's conservative and libertarian opponents, it is that. We know what pays at least some of the coming bill. Taxes. And lots of them (6/29).
Arizona Republic: False Premise Lets 'Obamacare' Go On
For whatever reason, Chief Justice John Roberts decided to rescue "Obamacare" from the constitutional trash heap. His reasoning in doing so should be an embarrassment to him. It certainly tossed more dirt on the burial site of the Founders' vision of a federal government with limited, enumerated powers (Robert Robb, 6/29).
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Health Care Ruling Not A Victory For America
Warnings to watch for judicial activism in this ruling spread far and wide, yet few suspected the court would uphold Obamacare in this manner, given the president and congressional Democrats justified the law via the Commerce Clause and not through Congress’s tax-writing power. By doing so, the court’s ruling will impact Americans just as the president intended. Americans are now forced to purchase a product or pay a price. There is little difference, in practical terms, between the president deeming that price a penalty and the court deeming it a tax (Tom Graves, R-Ga., and Phil Gingrey, R-Ga., 6/28).
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Verdict Is A Step Forward And Best Is Yet To Come
After more than a century of debate, President Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress won a historic victory with passage of the Affordable Care Act. Exorbitant health care costs prompted Democrats to take the lead and do what no other Congress has been able to do — put health insurance in reach for more than 50 million uninsured Americans and more affordable for everyone (Hank Johnson, D-Ga., and John Lewis, D-Ga., 6/28).
San Francisco Chronicle: Supreme Court Upholds Obamacare As Constitutional
But the high court ruling is still masterful. It keeps politics and personal views out of the Supreme Court's mainstay duty to rule on constitutional matters. It honors Congress' role to determine policy and the legislative body's intersection with politics. A sweeping health care plan was saved. So was the nation's respect for the Supreme Court (6/28).
Journal of the American Medical Association: Supreme Court Ruling On The Medicaid Expansion: Carrots Are Okay, Sticks Are Not
Because the federal government is going to fund the entire cost of the expansion initially, states will be hard-pressed to turn away free money. This will be especially difficult for those politicians running for reelection in those states. How can a state explain to its poorest constituents that they must remain uninsured because the state is refusing to accept money from the federal government that other states are accepting?... Moreover, there will likely be enormous pressure from hospitals, physicians, and others who offer health care to accept that Medicaid money, as it will eventually flow into the medical system (Dr. Aaron E. Carroll, 6/28).
Journal of the American Medical Association: The Health Care Law Stands: Now What?
The Supreme Court decision has allowed health care reform to move forward. If the act had been repealed, the nation would almost certainly have been stuck without change for the foreseeable future. Now, at least, there is a chance for progress in this arena. Whether there’s enough follow-through to make this time more successful than in the past depends on whether enmity for the law and for President Obama overwhelms the desire to do more for those in real need (David M. Cutler, 6/28).