Reaction to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on ObamaCare

June 29, 2012

June 29, 2012                                                            Scott Moss

On June 28, 2012, the United States Supreme Court largely upheld the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, or more commonly known as “ObamaCare,” by ruling that the individual mandate was constitutional.

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Reaction to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on ObamaCare

June 29                                                            Scott Moss

On June 28, 2012, the United States Supreme Court largely upheld the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, or more commonly known as “ObamaCare,” by ruling that the individual mandate was constitutional.
 
Scott Moss, a CU-Boulder law professor, says he was not surprised by the ruling upholding the individual mandate because during oral arguments the justices showed less skepticism towards the mandate as a tax law while questioning the mandate as a commerce law.

CUT 1 “All the skepticism that the various judges showed about the mandate as a commerce law did not include the same kind of expressed skepticism about the mandate as a tax law. (:11) And, in particular, that justices Kennedy and Roberts did not express the same skepticism that the mandate is a tax power than they did in their skepticism that it was a commerce power.” (25)  

Moss was a little surprised that Justice Roberts was the swing vote in this decision and not Justice Kennedy, who has shown over the course of his tenure that he doesn’t always vote with the conservative block on the Court.

CUT 2 “Everybody always thought Kennedy and Roberts were the potential swings on this one. There was more reason to see Kennedy as a swing vote than Roberts. But I am a little surprised that even though I could have seen either or both Kennedy or Roberts going the other way, I would have thought Kennedy was more likely than Roberts. Not less likely.” (:18)


Moss was also surprised that the Court ruled against the provision that would punish states by withholding funds because the state would not expand Medicaid to all individuals under 65 earning less then 133 percent of the poverty line, about $30,000 a year for a family of four.

CUT 3 “The court really has not aggressively reigned in Congresses' power to grant funding to the states that comes with strings attached. (11) So this is a more aggressive limitation than before. And I was particularly surprised that some of the center-left justices took that view as well.” (:22) 

According to a new Gallop Poll, as of June 29 Americans are evenly divided over the Court’s decision, with 46 percent agreeing and 46 percent disagreeing. Along party lines, nearly 80 percent of the Democrats agreed while only 13 percent of Republican voters agreed with the decision with 45 percent of independents agreeing.

-CU-

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