Editor's Note: The full text of the healthcare law decision can be found here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/28/supreme-court-health-care-reform-ruling_n_1605393.html
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In a landmark decision, both legally and politically, the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld President Barack Obama's sweeping healthcare law, including the central mandate that individuals must buy health insurance.
According to ABCNews, the court's ruling means you have to buy health insurance or be subject to a tax.
Pundits and politicians alike are already heralding the decision as a major political boon to Obama, whose supporters were concerned that an overturn of the law, or just the individual mandate, would harm the president's re-election bid this year.
Obama's health care law, which also requires health insurers to provide coverage to children of policy holders up to 26 years old and bans insurance companies from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions, was challenged by several states who argued that some of its conditions, particularly the individual mandate, were unconstitutional.
Republicans also had vehemently opposed the health care law and their presumptive presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, has vowed to seek its repeal if he's elected.
Connecticut officials react
The Hartford Business Journal reports that the head of one of Connecticut's leading business lobbying groups was "deeply disappointed" by the ruling:
"The tragedy in this ruling is that Connecticut residents are now at the mercy of politicians from other states and bureaucrats in Washington whose decisions won't be based on what is best for Connecticut," said Andrew Markowski the Connecticut state director of the National Federation of Independent Business. "Small businesses here will be overwhelmed by mandates, taxes and burdens imposed on them by people whom we cannot as easily hold accountable."
With the news Thursday that the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Health Care Act - mandating all Americans to acquire health insurance - politicians, public officials and candidates for office sent out statements to the media and tweeted their reactions.
Here are a few excerpts from what they said:
“The Supreme Court has taken a historic stand with the Affordable Care Act — this decision demonstrates that the nation will do the right thing in ensuring accessible, affordable health care for all Americans. With SCOTUS validating the law, Republicans in Congress should cease their efforts to repeal the reforms and instead join President Obama in focusing on job creation.” – a joint statement to the media from Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman.
“Whew! Supreme Court does the right thing. This is a good day for health care in America.” – Rep. Chris Murphy, D-5, also a Democratic U.S. Senate candidate, via Twitter.
“Today’s decision by the High Court is extremely disappointing. The American people were told that this legislation would lower costs. It hasn’t. They were told that it would not increase taxes. It does. The tax increases that finance this will devastate small businesses and middle class families.” – U.S. Senate candidate Linda McMahon, R, who explained her opinions in a full statement here.
"Obamacare is increasing health insurance premiums, reducing patient choice, threatening the quality of care, and impeding medical progress. On top of that, six years of Obamacare 'benefits' are paid for with ten years of taxes." - U.S. Senate candidate Chris Shays, R, in a statement to the media.
“Today's ruling was a victory for families and insures every American will get the care they need even if they can't afford health insurance.” - Susan Bysiewicz, Democratic U.S. Senate candidate, via Twitter.
“The uncertainty created by the false questioning of the Act’s legality has been settled and states, insurance companies and businesses can move forward and keep carrying out the important health care and consumer protection provisions contained in the law.” – Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-3, in a statement to the media.
“SCOTUS stands with children w/pre-existing conditions, women, would-be entrepreneurs, seniors and progress for the American people.” – Rep. Jim Himes, D-4, via Twitter.
“Today’s ruling is a landmark moment in the fight for stable, secure health coverage for all Americans.” – Rep. Joe Courtney, D-2, via Twitter.
“Today’s Supreme Court ruling is a victory for the millions of Americans who need health care, for the individuals living with medical conditions who would otherwise be denied coverage, for parents who will be able to keep their children on their insurance plan until age 26 and for seniors struggling to afford their prescription medications. Tens of thousands of Connecticut residents have already benefitted from health care reform, and tens of thousands more will benefit as more provisions of the law take effect.” – Attorney General George Jepsen, a Democrat, via a statement to the media.
“ObamaCare must be repealed. Let's send a bold conservative with courage to DC this fall.” – Mark Greenberg, Republican candidate in the 5th District Congressional race, via Twitter.
Governor Dannel P. Malloy and Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman released the following statement regarding the Supreme Court decision on the Affordable Health Care Act:
This is a tremendous day for all Americans. The Supreme Court has taken a historic stand with the Affordable Care Act—this decision demonstrates that the nation will do the right thing in ensuring accessible, affordable health care for all Americans. With SCOTUS validating the law, Republicans in Congress should cease their efforts to repeal the reforms and instead join President Obama in focusing on job creation. In Connecticut, we’ve been leading the way on this issue—we never stopped working, and today’s decision is an affirmation of everything we’ve worked so hard to prepare. Now let’s make sure we continue to implement this historic, positive change.
Christopher Shays, Republican candidate for United States Senate released this statement in response to the Supreme Court's decision on Obamacare.
"The Supreme Court's decision to uphold the constitutionality of the individual healthcare mandate just reaffirms the need to send someone to the United States Senate who has the ability to repeal this destructive law. Obamacare is the single greatest infringement on our individual liberties and personal freedoms that we have seen in my generation. This was a power grab of the U.S. health care system by Chris Murphy, a Democratic Congress and the Obama Administration.