Supreme Court Upholds Health Care Law; Obamacare Mandate Survives in 5-4 Decision

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In a somewhat surprising and extremely controversial decision, the Supreme Court upheld President Obama's signature health care law Thursday morning.

The 2010 law's mandate that every American purchase health insurance or face a fine had been challenged on constitutional grounds by 26 U.S. states.

The mandate was upheld as a tax, however, by a 5-4 vote.

Chief Justice John Roberts joined the liberal wing of the Supreme Court. Tom Goldstein of SCOTUSblog says Roberts effectively "saved' the Affordable Care Act.

Obama Speech

Opponents cast the law, known pejoratively as "Obamacare," as the federal government forcing citizens to enter a market and buy a product against their will.

The government countered that the law was actually only regulating an existing market, as everyone requires health care at some point in his or her life.

Roberts and Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor and Stephen Breyer sided with the government and declared the law valid.

Ginsburg, Kagan, Sotomayor and Breyer agreed that the individual mandate should be upheld as part of Congress' power to regulate interstate commerce.

Roberts disagreed, writing that the mandate is actually a tax, despite the Obama administration's reluctance to describe it that way during the bill's passage.

In any case, however, he declared the law constitutional as such, writing:

"If an individual does not maintain health insurance, the only consequence is that he must make an additional payment to the IRS when he pays his taxes."

The U.S. Chief Justice added that this means "the mandate is not a legal command to buy insurance. Rather, it makes going without insurance just another thing the Government taxes, like buying gasoline or earning an income."

Anthony Kennedy, often the court's swing vote, dissented, saying that he and three conservative justices believe "the entire Act before us is invalid in its entirety."

Republicans have vowed to repeal the law if President Obama is defeated in 2012, though that would also require control of the U.S. House and Senate.

In any case, the Supreme Court ruling signals a major victory for Obama, who sacrificed major political capital to get his signature piece of legislation passed.

For now, the liberal dream of national health care reform - some of which is already in effect, but the bulk of which is on hold until 2014 - remains realized.

What do you think of President Obama's health care law:

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Mitt is weak dick who cant stand up for what he believes in.Hes a follower and will do what congress wants.

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i enact law to pull over blacks guarantee they have pot o drugs on them to sell.leave hispanics alone they mean no harm.

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Romney has experience and he understands Buisness. Why should he tell us now? So Obama could trash it? Romney understands timing. In time- he will unveil his well thought out plan. Nobody wants to go back to what it once was and it never has gone back! Did Obama go back to Clinton? You only wish. H Clinton? Democrats should have chose her.

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Anyone can say repeal but mitt has yet to give detail examples of what he wants to do.He knows Obamcare wil work cause Romneycare has succeeded.

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Has Mitt laid out a format to help the economy?No.Has it detail a new ins law?No.He says what Republicans want to hear.

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Really ask yourself is it worth having Republican bring back the era of 07,they want to continue same policies that got us here.research your data.

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Take time research you will see47% became underfunded in 07,unheard of in the modern world.why take chance and go there again with Mitt&Rep.

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The economy tank after Clinton era.Like volcano it erupted in 07.Lawtistics is min.7Yrs.to recover.

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I know- the truth has always been a hard thing to deal with. So many plans of being entitled on the verge of collapse? Did you actually think that you could bullshit the public forever? Listen- here's what you do! Go to bed! Wake up- brush your nasty teeth! Apologize to every living soul that you have ever met! Try your best to turn your life around! Oh.... Buy a belt! NOBAMA IN 2012! To think- OBAMA didn't even buy that old woman a house on election day.

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Media has also turned politics into Hollywood shadow which sucks because we need politics to be serious.