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Obama health law faces Supreme Court judgement
2 years ago

Obama health law faces Supreme Court judgement

US Supreme Court, Washington DC, 20 June 2012
The Supreme Court has a panel of nine justices, five of whom are seen as conservative, and four liberal

A wide-ranging healthcare reform bill seen as a key achievement of Barack Obama's presidency is facing its moment of judgement in the US Supreme Court.

 

The law, passed in 2010, requires all Americans to obtain health insurance or face a penalty fine.

 

But conservative opponents of the president say that "mandate" is illegal under the terms of the US constitution.

 

The justices are expected to rule on Thursday, and could cut the mandate or strike down the whole law.

 

The debate over healthcare is a fiercely polarising issue in the US, and a verdict either way is expected to have a major impact on the race for the White House.

 

Mr Obama and Republican Mitt Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, are just five months away from the presidential election.

 

The president maintains a slender lead in some polls, but is facing a stiff challenge from Mr Romney and conservative opponents, amid a rocky economic outlook.

 

Mr Romney told a rally near Washington DC on Wednesday that if the Supreme Court did not quash the law he would "repeal and replace" the bill if he won the White House.


Divided court

The bitter debate over the legislation has touched such partisan issues as state and individual rights, federal deficits, end-of-life care, and abortion and contraception funding.

 

The nine-member Supreme Court has several options.

 

It could decide that it is too early to rule on the case, as many of the law's provisions - including the mandate to buy health insurance - do not come into force until 2014.

 

It could also dismiss the challenge to the mandate on a technicality, ruling that the penalty constitutes a tax lawfully imposed by Congress. Few observers expect the court to choose this option.

 

The meat of the case concerns the challenge to the individual mandate, which the justices could decide oversteps Congress' right to regulate interstate commerce.

 

Analysts say that questioning from several conservative justices during oral arguments at the court in March revealed a deep level scepticism on the bench.

 

The court could decide to strike down the mandate and send the bill back to Congress to find a way to make the rest of it work. It could also overturn the entire law, ruling that the need to buy health insurance is integral to the legislation.

 

The Supreme Court is composed of nine justices, five seen as conservatives and four as liberals. It has delivered several divisive wafer-thin majority rulings in recent years, prompting criticism from liberals.

 

A 5-4 ruling in 2010 known as Citizens United changed campaign finance laws in the US to allow unrestricted fund-raising by independent groups not directly affiliated with candidates.

 

A recent study by the Pew Research Center found public approval of the court at its lowest level since records began in 1987.

 

Page 1    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-18581863

 

2 years ago

Mixed reviews

 

The healthcare law - officially known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, but commonly dubbed Obamacare by opponents - was passed in 2009 without a single Republican vote in Congress, and signed into law by President Obama in June 2010.

 

Polls suggest many Americans would be pleased to see the law overturned.

 

However, individual elements of the bill are popular, and some people are opposed because they do not think it goes far enough.

 

The bill has already enabled millions of Americans aged under 26 to obtain health insurance by staying on their parents' coverage for longer than previously allowed.

 

Patients with pre-existing medical conditions have also been able to obtain health insurance since the passage of the law.

 

Mixed reviews

The healthcare law - officially known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, but commonly dubbed Obamacare by opponents - was passed in 2009 without a single Republican vote in Congress, and signed into law by President Obama in June 2010.

Polls suggest many Americans would be pleased to see the law overturned.

However, individual elements of the bill are popular, and some people are opposed because they do not think it goes far enough.

The bill has already enabled millions of Americans aged under 26 to obtain health insurance by staying on their parents' coverage for longer than previously allowed.

Patients with pre-existing medical conditions have also been able to obtain health insurance since the passage of the law.

The rising cost of healthcare over 50 years, 1960-2010
Who's uninsured?

 

Nearly 50 million, or 16.3%of Americans are uninsured

 

By ethnicity, the rate of those who lack insurance is

 

15.4% White

20.8% Black

18.1% Asian

30.7% Hispanic

 

Source: US Census Bureau

 

 

Analysis

image of Mark Mardell

Mark Mardell

North America editor

 

If the Supreme Court strikes down healthcare it will be a huge setback for President Obama, the worst shellacking since the mid-term elections. How he responds could be critical and might change the way the election campaign is fought.

 

His priority would have to be to rally supporters, harness their disappointment and fight back. It is just not easy to see how he does that.

 

If he attacks the court, it would sound petulant. Calling on Congress to act in some non-specific way is getting a bit thin, not least because we all know it is not a plan but a tired taunt.

 

It is also a strategy from La La Land. Even if he wins re-election, he would still face an intransigent Republican House. And it is not clear how he could salvage universal healthcare without the option of forcing people to buy insurance.

 

Page 2    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-18581863

 

2 years ago

Thanks for this information, Ray.   We should hear by 10:15 a.m. or so this morning how the court ruled.

 

I believe two parts of the healthcare bill will stand and that will be children up to age 26 can stay on their parents healthcare and the pre-existing illness clause will be abolished.   Those two parts will stand IMO.   The rest is a bunch of garbage and will put the final nail in Obama's re-election efforts.

Video
2 years ago

Obama health law faces Supreme Court judgement

Help

A wide-ranging healthcare reform bill seen as a key achievement of Barack Obama's presidency is facing its moment of judgement in the US Supreme Court.

 

The law, passed in 2010, requires all Americans to obtain health insurance or face a penalty fine.

 

But conservative opponents of the president say that "mandate" is illegal under the terms of the US constitution.

 

Jonny Dymond reports.

 

video        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-18620318

2 years ago

tell the truth Diane, healthcare is always a worry, I do hope it in the favour of American people and not in Obama, 

 

the American working man and woman if Obama Care goes through may endup paying a Arm and a Leg in Tax's, (meaning very high Tax's), like we have done in the past with NHS in the UK, but even then as you are aware the NHS still endup in mess.

 

the Highest Rate of Tax's we paid was 45% then drop to 35% for a number of years, and when I say a number of years, I mean 20 to 30 years or so, but there was also an insurance stamp also cost's, and the amount what was taken out your pay check, went on what you earned, that also went to the NHS, so I am not talking a few Million it's more of a few Billions plus, 

2 years ago

Ray - well it appears the Supreme Court ruled NOT in favor of Americans...

 

Now I would like someone to truly explain this to me...as long as I keep healthcare - how would my taxes go up to pay for those who don't have it.  I am all for people to get healthcare, I do think everyone should have it, espeically children, they are just victims of their parents. 

 

But what does this penalty mean?  I mean how are they going to get someone to pay a penalty if they cant even afford to pay for healthcare?  And is this a monthly penalty, a yearly penalty, a 1 time penalty?  And what if that penalty never gets paid?  How do they collect?  If I dont pay within so many days, weeks, months, years - do I go to jail?  If so - what good would that do to me and my family? 

 

And why do people think its ok to make someone get healthcare...IF they dont want it, isnt that our right NOT to have it?

2 years ago

http://www.newsmax.com/?u=http://www.newsmax.com/Estrich/Supreme-Court-overturn-Obamacare/2012/04/11/id/435522&Promo_code=E743-1&gclid=CLrf1J608bACFYic7QodUj3ftg

 

Suggest that people go to this site and you will find a list of all articles that Newsmax has on the Supreme Court ruling regarding Obamacare; everything for the fall of the stock market on down the line.

 

Now it is in the Republican's hands and I certainly hope that they keep their word and do what they suggest that they will do, repeal it.

2 years ago

The truth, Ray?   Quite frankly, health insurance is the least of my worries.  Most Americans enjoy good health coverage through their companies, the government if they work for the government or they have military health insurance.   Most Americans are responsible people and know that healthcare insurance is a fixed expense in their monthly budget.   Obamacare was never necessary, Ray.  

 

When Romney wins, he'll get rid of ObamaCare.  There's a better way for our country.    

 

 

2 years ago

Actually, that is not the case any more Diane.  With all the responsible Americans out of work, health care insurance is not something they can afford nor have.  I worked the last 10 years of my working career without Medical insurance as my employer did not provide it and I could not afford  $496 a month for insurance. It is not that good American's don't want it or are irresponsible, it is that it is too expensive.  Unfortunately this is where so many are out of touch with what so many of the middle class are experiencing, not just the low income.  When I was working I was making $29,000 a year (not great but not bad for one person and I had money for more than just survival).  But I could not afford the insurance.  What people that have insurance (and I had been one of those) is just how expensive it is if you don't have the ability to purchase it through a group plan.  My daughter would have to pay nearly $700 for herself and the 2 little boys and she can't afford it and provide a home, food, utilities, etc.

 

So, yes, there has to be some means to get the insurance companies to be realistic in what they charge for premiums and that is something best handled by the States themselves and not the federal government.  

 

But I am not too worried at this point as the SCOTUS actually handed Romney a big plus; they determined that the mandate is exactly what Obama and the Dems have fought and fought to convince people it is not, it is a tax on Americans and as such, it is a huge nail in Obama's coffin come November.  People are already up in arms about this; I have had so many emails from family and friends and half of them are Dems and would have voted for Obama but not now.  He lost at least 12 votes in my family and circle of friends as of today.  I am hearing the same from other sources, too.  So, as Rubio stated, it may be Constitutionally accepted, but it does not have to be accepted by the people and he, as well as the rest of the GOP Congress are going to go after repeal of Obamacare now, and may they succeed.

2 years ago

The problem with insurance cost isn't really the insurance companies but the government. Health insurance is solely under state insurance department control and much of the problem is cost transfer from government programs like Medicare/Medicaid that pays less than costs in some cases, the Fed dictate to treat anyone going to the ER without insurance, and the states requirements as to what policies MUST cover that limits options while increasing costs. The alleged "Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care" Act (it provides no protection and makes real health care more expensive along with the insurance to pay for it) is a total failure in addressing the problems. As to the decision, sorry but am not buying the “happy face” babbling on this. It is unconstitutional for a variety of reasons and when is “fine” for not doing something a “tax”? Does that make a fine for not wearing a seat belt or not having your dog controlled or littering a “tax”??? Last I heard the “tax” would be collected from Fed income tax refunds for individuals so how is that a “tax” in any way that has been understood in the past? This is a BS ruling and Roberts has proven to be a huge disappointment now in two cases that have created even more problems than the original issues brought before the Court in the first place.

2 years ago

Kat H, I am sorry for responding so late but I have been very busy and still am upto a point on the European side of Political Derby due to the EU Summit,

 

however, I have obtain a copy of the ruling by the Supreme Court and I will be going through it, at the moment the penalty that you refer too, is based on a person householder's earns, but, I want to have a further look into this,

 

I also notice on the complete ruling itself, there seems be a Conflict of Law in relation to your Human Rights, which had this been in the UK it would be challenge in the Courts, and with this in mind, I feel same should also apply in the US.

 

looking at the Obama Care in my opinion was not in anyway a matter for the Courts, I believe that the matter of this would have been better sorted out by-way of each State holding a Referendum on Obama Care before it was signed into Law.

 

as you maybe aware, there is a very fine line between Dictatorship and Democracy, Obama Care has been reported, not only in the US but also in Britain and no doubt around the world, the Countries where ObamaCare has been reported, are well aware, that 26 plus of US State's did not want Obama Care, so it was very clear beyond doubt which side the US Court was coming down on.

 

however, in saying this, Obama himself was reported on the BBC web-site that the US President Obama warns Supreme Court over health law , this maybe seen as a threat from Obama, which totally unacceptable in a Democratic Society in which we live and enjoy today, indeed Prime Minister Cameron and the Minister of Justice Ken Clark would not in anyway dare warn any Court in the UK on any matter.

 

I would also add, Obama Care is a basic Health Care meaning the Health Care may relate too costs of Medication or treatment, what I am say here, if the medication and treatment is to costly, then Obama Care will not treat you due to the cost, this as happend in the UK on a number of times, as I have pointed out on threads on Political Derby

 



This post was modified from its original form on 30 Jun, 15:00
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