Supreme Court upholds individual mandate in health care law


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Submitted: Thu, 06/28/2012 - 2:32pm
Updated: Fri, 06/29/2012 - 12:22pm
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WASHINGTON (AP) — The individual mandate survives.

The Supreme Court has upheld the heart of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul — ruling in favor of the requirement that most Americans can be required to have health insurance, or else pay a penalty.

The decision means the historic overhaul will continue to take effect over the next several years, affecting the way countless Americans receive and pay for their personal medical care.

The ruling also hands President Barack Obama a campaign-season victory.

The court found problems with the law’s expansion of Medicaid. But even there, it said the expansion could proceed as long as the federal government does not threaten to withhold the entire Medicaid allotment to states if they don’t take part in the extension.

The court’s four liberal justices, Stephen Bryer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, joined Roberts in the outcome.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

57 Comments

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday says:

    It happened to Eisenhower with Earl Warren.

    It happened to George H.W. Bush with David Souter.

    It happened to George W. Bush with John Roberts.

    God help the United States. The Constitution has been relegated to the dustbin of history.

  • just one man says:

    We are all living in a country that is on the turning point of a power hungry goverment. My only worry is that the course of “push”..”shove”…”shoot” is the escalating thought.
    We all should be prepared for that.

    I have but one thing to say about this ruling.

    I REFUSE TO COMPLY….!

  • Tweety12 says:

    Thats your god -giving right.If you are not paying for it, who is?I assume you go to the doctor same time.You just might be one of the few that can pay out of pocket.This might make sense to you or it might not.At one time i use to hate corn beef wouldn’t eat it any kind of way.One day i accidently ate a piece it was actually good.Moral,hated something i never tried until it was an accident.

  • Guest2020 says:

    “We are endowed by our CREATOR with certain unalienable rights”. Jesus would not support the government taking away that which God has given. Jesus would not want the government to rob Peter to pay Paul.

    We the people were taking care of each other long before the government stepped in. And if the government didn’t take so much off the top, then we the people would still be able to take care of each other.

  • Guest2020 says:

    I completely agree. Too bad that by the time the liberals figure it out, it will be too late.

  • Guest2020 says:

    I am suprised we didn’t get an earthquake with the Founding Fathers, and those who gave their lives in the Revolutionary War rolling in their graves.

  • Guest2020 says:

    Today, the Supreme Court overturned our victory in the Revolutionary War.

  • Guest7969 says:

    KEEP THAT CRAP out of the church! Jesus taught SELF RESPONSIBILITY and love to one another. He NEVER taught that is was ok to TAKE, AKA STEAL, from your brothers pocket to line your own! YOU keep that social justice CRAP OUT of the church!

  • Guest7969 says:

    The government has NEVER run a program efficiently! If you think your health care costs are going DOWN..you know..that 900 bucks Obama claims we over pay every year…if you think thats coming back into your pocket…YOUR AN IDIOT! IF you think that this isn’t a step in controlling EVERYTHING about how you live, what you eat…YOUR AN IDIOT! It won’t be long until every facet of how you live your daily life and what you put into your mouth will be controlled by the government in the name of bettering your life and keeping health costs down! If you don’t comply with not smoking, not drinking alcohol, not eating that extra egg for the week…YOU’LL BE TAXED! MARK MY WORDS!!!

  • Guest 2 says:

    From the way I understand this is now the ones that do not have healthcare will be required to buy it, and if they don’t they will be taxed. They said there will be a box on your income tax form that asks: “yes” I have insurance, or “no” I don’t have insurance. If you check “no” you will be taxed either as a single unit or as a family unit. At least that amount will come out of the refund you now get to help pay for your coverage so the rest of us don’t have to foot the entire bill. They can’t FORCE you to buy it but they CAN tax you if you don’t.

  • Guest3893833 says:

    isn’t really with the health care act itself, it’s the Federal Mandate that everyone either has health insurance or they pay a “tax”. I am in disbelief that the SCOTUS chose to uphold this and then call it a “tax”. You can change the wording and call it whatever the heck you want to but it’s not a tax, it’s a penalty, and it’s utter BS!! I know there are no easy answers for the problems with health insurance that this country faces but this is not the answer.

    I’m an independent & was on the fence about voting for Obama but not anymore. I’ll vote for Romney for lack of a better option and hope that congress repeals at least the individual mandate portion of this fiasco. And for those that are commenting saying if someone doesn’t like the decision then they should “leave the country” my response to them is you can pound sand.

    I don’t think the founding fathers ever envisioned the federal government forcing every person in the country to buy a product or face a monetary penalty and pretty much making that a condition of being a US citizen. I care a great deal about the uninsured, the poor and eldery and anyone else who struggles to get medical care but this is NOT THE ANSWER!!!! Oh well, it’s just my opinion and doesn’t matter. In November it will……

  • Guest9743 says:

    The passing of this mandate falls squarely on the shoulders of Chief Justice John Roberts, a republican appointee….there’s no other way to spin it because he could have stopped it dead in its tracks!!

  • Guest C.L. says:

    The sky is falling! The sky is falling!

  • GuestMan. says:

    Jesus was a Liberal Socialist. Remember the loaves and fishes parable. That was Socialistic. Love and help your brother. Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s. All Socialist. Learn, brother, learn.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday says:

    He never said that it was okay to slough your responsibilities as a Christian off on Caesar. When you involve Caesar. far too much gets eaten up in bureaucracy and waste. Caesar specializes in those two traits.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday says:

    A fillibuster-proof majority in the Senate. Without that, Obamacare is going nowhere.

  • Guest2020 says:

    I have witnessed the effects that Obamacare has had on small business. And that is just with Congress voting it in. When it actually takes affect, things are going to get worse.

  • Guest22 says:

    This Country fundamentally changed today.

    Rest in Peace America, it will never be the same.

  • Guest14789 says:

    The problem with our country is the selfish and greed that is exemplified by all the comments on this site. People die every day in this country because they are not able to afford the cost of medical care. Have we reached the point as a civilization where we are so unconcerned with the well-being of our fellow citizens that we are willing to turn our backs on those in need. As a white, college educated, male, tax paying, Christain, I hope that Christ will judge me by the way I imitate the Love he showed me, by showing that same Love to others. Thankfully, Christ did not turn his back on us, and hopefully we will learn to do the same for our fellow man.

  • GuestNamedDan says:

    Thank you sir and Amen! Take away the government subsidies and the problem doesn’t go away. It saddens me to think that in today’s society Jesus would be proclaimed a liberal atheist for his work with the poor and his consistent actions to help those in the greatest need. We need the government to provide health care coverage, to feed free lunches to kids who would otherwise go hungry, and to provide a safety net to the elderly who helped build this country. Why? Well, what did you do today to help someone less fortunate. What programs does your church have in place? What do your neighbors do to help a fellow neighbor through a hard time? “What Would Jesus Do?” isn’t just a bracelet. Decrying someone else’s solution is just empty noise unless you are willing to offer your own solution and be willing to take action.

  • MrT says:

    Lets put an insurance sales desk at the entrance to every hospital ER.
    This way all you folks that refuse to buy health insurance can reevaluate that decision before you can get treatment!!
    Just a thought.

  • GuestMan. says:

    What a great day for the American people! This should have been done when Nixon and every other president since him wanted it. It will be good for the USA>

  • OU812 says:

    I see some purpose in this. If they had overturned it, it would have been a slap in the face of the libs and probably got them fired up for the election. This way they can gloat for a little while, has the possibility of firing up the right, and hopefully Romney gets in and holds up his promise to overturn it. Hopefully.

  • portcity rider says:

    Who are we throwing out, the justices because they didn’t vote the way you wanted.If i remember correctly they are there until they retire or death.

  • katydid1971 says:

    Throw the bums out….when is enough, enough! In November we can change things!

  • Challengetheworld says:

    The Bums presented a law that is not perfect but better than the current situation. Since you said “we” can change things…what are you planning to change. You haven’t presented an alternative in the Bush years, what is your plan? Where is it? What does it do? Why is it better?

  • Guest51 says:

    Please Katy I would like to know how many of the current justices will be running for election in November, so I can help you vote them out

    Oh wait federal judges are appointed for life or retirement, and the majority were appointed by GOP presidents and tend to be more conservetive.

    You just gave a perfect example of the American public, they will vote and gripe with no idea what or who they are voting for and why they are gripping.

    Please educate yourself on the way governemnt works and the issues that matter.

  • 1981duke says:

    His platform for maybe 4 more years.

  • Robo says:

    Chief Justice Roberts just sent our country completely down the road to full socialized medicine, as exists in most European countries. Be prepared for even more tax increases as the plan now moves more quickly into implementation. Those who are at 400% of the government defined poverty level or below will receive subsidies to allow them to purchase their insurance. Of course, the subsidies come from our tax money, which is why taxes must go up dramatically over time.
    Millions of additional people will be added to the rolls, flooding the doctors and hospitals with new patients. Our quality of coverage will decline, and waiting time for appointments and treatment will increase.
    President Obama said specifically this was not a tax issue, but of course, it is.

  • Guest08 says:

    So its your feeling that this will hurt you because of more people getting healthcare.I get a kick out of this obamacare when it is simply healthcare.Frankly i think its a great ideal.Just my opinion doesn’t make me right or wrong.Like your opinion doesn’t make you right or wrong.

  • Guest6858 says:

    I cannot believe the Supreme Court upheld this mandate. I don’t feel like an American anymore.

  • Challengetheworld says:

    no one is keeping you here…you can leave.

  • Vog46 says:

    Why is it so hard to believe?
    When it was first voted on MOST conservatives (Read GOP/Fox News) said it’s totally legal. Mitt Romney said in 2010 that the mandate was totally legal. It was when it was challenged that most of the pundits began an orchestrated campaign to over whelm the air waves with the “it’s illegal mantra”.

    What stunned me was Roberts writing saying it was in essence a tax and the government had the authority to tax without challenge. ?That was an interesting legal twist and downplayed by the Obama legal team during their arguments before the SCOTUS. Apparently it hit home with Roberts.

    Best Regards
    Vog

  • Beach Bum says:

    A normally conservative judge was the swing vote. Guess I will change political parties now midstream too. I recommend that all people secede from the Union and take our Country back.

    If someone can not afford health insurance, how will they be able to afford paying the penalty? Seems like a scene from Blazing Saddles.

    Electorial college will make sure Obama stays in office another 4 more years.

    Obama may be the commander in chief but he is NOT my president.

  • IJJ says:

    If you don’t like the current policies,then move!!! Did you forget, ITS A FREE COUNTRY….

  • Guest Apu says:

    The whole idea of giving Supreme Court justices lifetime tenure was so they wouldn’t be beholden to political parties. If they always ruled along party lines so they would get re-elected or re-appointed, then they wouldn’t be independent. If that was the case, what would be the point of having a Supreme Court? The constitutionality of laws would largely depend on the idealogy of whichever political party was more popular at any given moment. Whether I agree with a particular decision or not, I personally don’t want a wishy-washy Supreme Court whose direction changes with every election.

  • Guestno says:

    As a small business owner, I am losing hope that we will ever make it now. Our government thinks it can push unlimited demands on small business, and we have already lost money for the last three years. I think the future will bring only the end of many small businesses.

  • Missy says:

    Wow, now that we’ve given the healthcare and pharmacutical corporations the keys to the national treasury, what’s to stop them from price gouging even more than they do now.

    For the life of me, I cannot justify $1800 for an MRI and $625 for a monthly prescription. This is just two examples from my household medical bills.

    This has to be stopped!! If we don’t vote our conscience in November, we have only ourselves to blame for the bankruptcy of our government and crash of our economy that is surely coming.

  • Guest705 says:

    I think some are forgetting how the old health care system worked. If you were in an accident and had no insurance you went to the ER (empty handed) and got treatment. The hospital could bill you but you could either skip out on the charge or pay $5 a month towards the bill. In the meantime the hospital had to cover the costs. They in turn use federal subsidies and raise costs to insurance companies who pass on the premium to people and companies that do pay for insurance. People with insurance end up paying twice, through taxes and through premiums.

    This law isn’t perfect but it is a starting place. Repealing it would only force us back into the situation we had in the first place.

    I will vote for anyone who outlines a BETTER idea and refuse to vote for anyone who simply says they’ll repeal it. I’m tired of hearing the Obamacare bash. Tell me what you will do to fix the system!

  • 1981duke says:

    Establish a national charge for every single procedure.
    This is the only price that charged,billed a customer.
    A dictorial approach,averaging present costs,allowing an amount for inflation.
    One price,anyhere USA.

  • Brenda says:

    I don’t live in a communist country. They can NOT make me do ANYTHING!!!!!If I could afford health insurance, I would already have it! Now I have to choose between having a roof over my head or health insurance! I don’t think so!!!!

  • Das Weibstück says:

    Who pays for any medical care you get? If you are barely affording a place to live I am guessing you do not go to the Dr. OR taxpayers and the already insured are paying for it. Why should everyone else cover your bills?

  • Guest705 says:

    You don’t have to get insurance. You are right, they can’t force you. You will pay a tax and those monies will go into a fund to cover the cost of uninsured people going to the ER. Some States already have uninsured motorist pools.

    What you cannot do is to ask others to pay your emergency medical costs through higher premiums and taxes. Are you actually willing to bleed to death at an accident scene so I won’t have to cover your ER bill? I doubt it.

    Those who truly, truly cannot afford it will find themselves eligible for assistance and that I will gladly chip in for. The days of using the ER as a free subsitute for medical care are over.

  • Guest2020 says:

    It is not a tax. It is a fine. If the government gives you a choice between doing what they say, or be penalized, then they are forcing you to do what they say.

  • E GUEST says:

    WHY WHEN ALL OTHER COUNTRIES IN THE WORLD YOU MOVE TO ARE THE SAME.WE USE TO STAND OUT BUT NOW WE ARE LIKE EVERYONE ELSE IN THE WORLD. HMMMM MUST HAVE BEEN PEER PRESSURE.

  • Beach Bum says:

    Ha ha ha, thanks for the laugh…

    There is nothing free in this Free Country…

    Demonstrated that today…health care with a fee…

    Your rights end where mine begin.

    Again, Obama may be the commander in chief but he is NOT my president….

  • GuestNamedDan says:

    Any country you move to will likely have a public option healthcare plan.

  • E GUEST says:

    HMMMM MR. CHALLENGETHEWORLD THAT RIGHT BUT WHERE SHALL WE GO NOW WE ARE JUST LIKE EVERYONE ELSE IN THE WORLD NO CHOICES.WAIT UNTIL YOUR NEIGHBOR START SPYING ON YOU AND REPORTS YOU TO HOMELAND POLICE SQUAD AND SAYS YOUR A THREAT TO THIS NATION JUST BECAUSE YOU DIDN’T KEEP YOUR GRASS CUT AND THEY DON’T LIKE YOU AND THEY COME AND PULL YOU OUT OF YOUR HOME DETAINED AND HOLD YOU IN JAIL WITH NO DUE PROCESS AND THEY CAN HOLD YOU FOR AS LONG AS THEY WANT.

  • Guest Outta Here says:

    If anyone knows how an American born-and-bred can exercise their “freedom to leave”, PLEASE let me know.

    I’m MORE than happy to relocate. Personally, I’m just finding it more difficult than just choosing a spot and packing up.

  • Challengetheworld says:

    First, mayor Bloomberg is trying to introduce a small facet by disallowing the sale of 64 oz soft drinks because he daily sees sloths corraling about his city without the moral turpitude that maybe they should have grabbed the bottled water. Sure, nothing is stopping the guy from buying two 32 oz drinks and making the same conclusion. But maybe, just maybe, the guy notices that he probably only needs the smaller one, then perhaps one life is somewhat altered. Its no different then changing the diet in a school lunchroom or elsewhere. You cannot always stop people from making poor decisions, however, you can try to dissuade them.

    Second, I believe in order to operate in a civilized society, which, we are slowly working toward because in the past 200 years we have decided a few things were a bad idea (slavery, segregation, pro-life, women’s right to vote) etc… All those items were “oops” moments where society had a knee jerk reaction when we tried to change them but over time they were adopted as being morally sound. You probably see this as an attempt to promote Socialism, but I see this AFA as a step in the right direction.

    You don’t have to buy health insurance and if you decide not to, thats your “freedom” but I am not footing the bill for it either should you be fiscally able to and make that poor decision. You should be asked to contribute via tax. Because when you are bleeding out on the side of the road, you better hope they get you healthcare quick so you can live. I see you pay for insurance and I do as well.

  • Challengetheworld says:

    If you feel un-American, you have just as much freedom to leave. I have yet to see the basis where this actually hurts small businesses. Please provide factual basis how a small business is affected by this and please do not be vague. If you are going to raise an argument, provide factual evidence for your basis.

    I’m not being anal, I’m just reaffirming the fact that you have freedom, as most conservatives are always crying about being stripped from, to leave the United States. Hell, I would have done it if Sarah Palin was elected vice president in 2008. Can you imagine what the country would be like now?

    Again, what makes you feel “un-American”. Would you feel more American if the government said they didn’t care about you or your healthcare at all what so ever?

    The problem I have is, whether I agree with the President or I don’t or the decision by the Supreme Court, should it have gone as I wanted or not…I still respect my country.

    This is a constitutional process. If they voted to repeal it all, yes, I would see it as a step in the wrong direction but I respect the fact that these justices are educated on the facets of your freedoms and your laws. Congress has the power to tax you, so the law is constitutional. The Congress was elected by the people, the President was elected by the people who in turn, appointed justices to the supreme court who made a decision based on facts on the laws of this nation that makes you feel “un-American”.

  • Guest08 says:

    I bet you have health insurance.

  • Guest6858 says:

    Challenge..don’t you see the big picture? First it’s healthcare, then it’s what you eat (Bloomberg NY,) then it’s anyone (illegal, dead, dogs) being allowed to vote because you don’t have to show ID. Then it’s thugs at the polls (Phila.) trying to tell you how to vote…and on and on and pretty soon, you have zero rights because, little by little, they’ve been stripped from you. And, I DO have health insurance…and I pay 758.00 per month for said insurance.

  • Challengetheworld says:

    I have car insurance, live insurance, health insurance, boat insurance, insurance if I get into an accident, insurance for my insurance….and I pay for all of it.

    Health Care became a business a long time ago, this drove the cost of everything up. Sadly, treating sick people was no longer the greater cause for good. So now, we are paying the penalty of a lack of regulation.

    I think the lack of knowledge over this AFA is part of the problem. You already are paying a tax for Medicaid/Medicare. Have a firm look at your paycheck, retirement check etc. This just affirms if someone is fiscally able to buy insurance, they should. If they don’t then they have to contribute more because living with no insurance is not exactly a good idea.

    I’d rather see everyone have the opportunity to seek health care then turn my shoulder and affirm that its not my problem.

  • Guest6858 says:

    Challange…I was making a heart-feld statement, pre-mourning if you will, the utter destruction of tens of thousands of small businesses and the destruction of our freedoms, one by one, and you have to make a sarcastic remark like that? That’s so anal.

  • portycity rider says:

    Guest you are way out.Not saying you don’t believe what you wrote(illega,dead ,dogs)Every since i was able to vote i had to show I.D.What to eat?Welcome to the field with the cost of health insurance.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday says:

    Because of the individual mandate, the young and healthy who rarely get sick will be paying to subsidize the elderly, the frail, and the worthless, lazy bums who choose to suck the system dry.

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