The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, was passed into law in the United States in 2010 with the purpose of improving health insurance coverage for Americans and lowering total healthcare costs. The measure has been hotly contested in Congress, and Republicans remain staunch opponents. Despite considerable progress in expanding healthcare coverage, it still faces substantial obstacles, including state adoption, funding, and gaining widespread public support.
On Thursday, the United States Supreme Court upheld Obamacare for the 3rd time. It is one of the last cases before the Supreme Court term finishes; there are only 18 cases remaining to be determined, and the term is just two weeks old.
About the Case
The issue concerned whether red states had the standing to file a lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act, which was enacted in 2010. The red states were found to lack standing by a 7-2 vote of the judges.
Justice Stephen Breyer wrote the opinion, which was co-authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, as well as Justices Clarence Thomas, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett. Justices Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch were the only ones to vote no.
The challenge to the legislation was dismissed on the grounds that Texas and some other GOP-dominated states that objected to the mandate clause were not compelled to pay anything and so lacked the capacity to pursue the case to court.
According to the White House, the ACA has provided health insurance to over 31 million Americans, a new high since the law’s inception. Moreover, the Urban Institute found in May that ACA premiums had decreased each of the previous three years. Many of the ACA’s requirements are now considered standard. The restriction on discrimination against persons with prior conditions covers up to 135 million people.
It’s still a BFD, according to President Joe Biden’s chief of staff, referring to the hot-mic moment when Biden whispered to former President Barack Obama about the importance of the Affordable Care Act.