Senators speak out on Obamacare ruling

Cheryl Sanders
December 17, 2018

A federal judge's ruling late Friday striking down the Affordable Care Act in its entirety has stoked anxiety among millions of Americans who rely on subsidized health insurance and millions more who have pre-existing conditions.

U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor in Texas ruled Friday that a change in tax law a year ago eliminating a penalty for not having health insurance invalidated the entire ACA.

"It's a great ruling for our country".

Speaking at a congressional ball at the White House, Trump said: "If the Republicans and the Democrats get together we are going to end up with incredible health care, which is the way it should have been from day one, and it's going to happen". "We will sit down with the Democrats if the Supreme Court upholds", Trump told reporters during a visit to Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia on a rainy Saturday.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi condemned the ruling and promised that the House of Representatives would participate in appeals after control of the legislative body passed to the Democrats in 2019. The Senate will remain in Republican hands.


Later, Obama highlighted what he calls the strengths of the legislation - young people staying on their parents' plans until they're 26, the coverage of preventive mental, preventative and contraceptive care, and women not being charged more for the same services.

Rovner says people should act as if the ACA is still in place, but the ruling opens a possibility for "an enormous disruption".

"This ruling is not going to affect people who are now enrolled who're in Obamacare policies or the policies for 2019", Collins said. Trump campaigned against it in 2016.

Last year, Republicans - while attempting to repeal ObamaCare - ended up getting rid of the penalty. But however one slices it, the following is clear: "The 2010 Congress memorialized that it knew the individual mandate was the ACA keystone". Republicans, meanwhile, hardly covered themselves in glory when they attempted to repeal and replace the law in 2017.

"Wow, but not surprisingly, ObamaCare was just ruled UNCONSTITUTIONAL by a highly respected judge in Texas", Trump said in a follow-up tweet. Adding the state-run exchanges, that number exceeded 11 million.


Reform should be the top priority as Congress and the administration considers next steps for healthcare policy, Minnesota Sen.

And because the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of Obamacare - and the individual mandate - under the basis the law's penalty is actually a "tax", and therefore legal under Congress' constitutionally-based taxing power, without the individual mandate, O'Connor said Obamacare must be "invalidated as a whole".

On Friday, a federal judge declared ObamaCare unconstitutional, following a Republican challenge.

With visions of sugar plums dancing in plaintiffs' heads, Judge O'Connor held that the individual mandate is "essential to and inseverable from the remainder of the ACA". He concluded it is "impermissible under the Interstate Commerce Clause-meaning the Individual Mandate is unconstitutional". This will have to go through a circuit court process. But, "O'Connor is so far off the reservation here that virtually any (appeals) panel will reverse him", Jost said.


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