This week, the Supreme Court issued its third ruling on the subject of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as Obamacare. And while the justices’ decision left President Joe Biden and other Democrats feeling emboldened, Republicans weren’t so pleased.
CNBC reported on Thursday that in a 7–2 decision, the nation’s highest court chose to overturn a lower court’s ruling voiding the ACA over its so-called individual mandate.
The law was being challenged by Texas along with a coalition of other states.
“A right and not a privilege”
The majority’s opinion was authored by Justice Stephen Breyer, who argued that the plaintiffs were unable to demonstrate how the legislation negatively impacted them.
“Neither the individual nor the state plaintiffs have shown that the injury they will suffer or have suffered is ‘fairly traceable’ to the ‘allegedly unlawful conduct’ of which they complain,” Breyer wrote, according to CNBC.
President Biden was among those welcoming the news. In a statement following the ruling, he warned that striking down the law would impact Americans affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“After more than a decade of attacks on the Affordable Care Act through the Congress and the courts, today’s decision — the third major challenge to the law that the U.S. Supreme Court has rejected — it is time to move forward and keep building on this landmark law,” the president said, according to CNBC.
Biden later pledged to make building on Obamacare the cornerstone of his health care policy — something many on the left have long called for. “Today’s decision affirms that the Affordable Care Act is stronger than ever, delivers for the American people, and gets us closer to fulfilling our moral obligation to ensure that, here in America, health care is a right and not a privilege,” he said, as CNBC reported.
“Sold on a lie”
Of course, Biden wasn’t alone in praising the ruling. Former President Barack Obama also expressed satisfaction in a series of triumphant-sounding tweets.
“Today, the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act. Again. This ruling reaffirms what we have long known to be true: the Affordable Care Act is here to stay,” the 44th president boasted.
But Republicans had a very different reaction. According to Fox News, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) complained in a statement that “Obamacare was sold on a lie to the American people.”
“Its crown jewel — the individual mandate — was unconstitutional when it was enacted and it is still unconstitutional,” Paxton alleged. “Yet, seven justices decided to avoid the question of the constitutionality by limiting its decision to a ruling on standing.”