A shocker from the Supreme Court as the conservative court has upheld the Affordable Care Act. The individual mandate which has been railed against by Republicans for two years as constitutional.
To say that this is a surprise is an understatement. Almost all conventional wisdom thought that the individual mandate was dead. Needless to say, this is a huge victory for President Obama, and giant step in progress towards a universal healthcare system. The Court found that the individual mandate was not constitutional under the Commerce Clause, but is constitutional under the federal government’s taxation power. The Supreme Court found the middle by limiting the Commerce Clause, but determined that the mandate was a penalty that is constitutional.
The dissenters were Scalia, Thomas, Kennedy, and Alito. George W. Bush appointee and Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the liberals on the court and wrote the majority decision.
The individual mandate was saved as, “CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS concluded in Part III-B that the individual mandate must be construed as imposing a tax on those who do not have health insurance, if such a construction is reasonable.”
The majority of the court reasoned that, “The Affordable Care Act does not require that the penalty for failing to comply with the individual mandate be treated as a tax for purposes of the Anti-Injunction Act.The Anti-Injunction Act therefore does not apply to this suit, and we may proceed to the merits.”
This is breaking news. More information to follow.