US Supreme Court backs Oba­macare

Metro USA (Boston) - - FRONT PAGE -

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thurs­day re­jected a con­ser­va­tive le­gal chal­lenge that could have doomed Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s health care law, up­hold­ing na­tion­wide tax sub­si­dies cru­cial to his sig­na­ture do­mes­tic pol­icy achieve­ment.

The court de­cided the law did not re­strict the sub­si­dies to states that es­tab­lish their own online health in­sur­ance.

Obama strode into the White House Rose Gar­den af­ter the rul­ing to de­clare that the law known as Oba­macare is work­ing, help­ing mil­lions of Amer­i­cans af­ford health in­sur­ance who oth­er­wise would have none, and that it is “here to stay.”

Chief Jus­tice John Roberts, a con­ser­va­tive ap­pointed by Repub­li­can Pres­i­dent Ge­orge W. Bush, wrote in the 6-3 rul­ing that Congress clearly in­tended for the tax sub­si­dies that help mil­lions of low- and mod­er­ate-in­come peo­ple af­ford pri­vate health in­sur­ance to be avail­able in all 50 states.

“Congress passed the Af­ford­able Care Act to im­prove health in­sur­ance mar­kets, not to de­stroy them,” Roberts wrote, adding that na­tion­wide avail­abil­ity of the cred­its is re­quired to “avoid the type of calami­tous re­sult that Congress plainly meant to avoid.”

Roberts was joined by fel­low con­ser­va­tive Jus­tice An­thony Kennedy and the court’s four lib­eral mem­bers in a rul­ing that may en­sure Oba­macare be­comes a last­ing el­e­ment of the na­tion’s so­cial pro­grams.

The rul­ing means the cur­rent sys­tem will re­main in place, with sub­si­dies avail­able na­tion­wide. If the chal­lengers had won, at least 6.4 mil­lion peo­ple in at least 34 states would have lost sub­si­dies worth an av­er­age of $272 per month.

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Sup­port­ers of the Af­ford­able Care Act celebrate.

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