The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the President Obama’s healthcare law in a 5-4 vote. The Supreme Court has found the individual mandate will be upheld as a tax.
FOX News Radio’s Jared Halpern reports from the United States Supreme Court:
Chief Justice John Roberts authoring what will be an historic opinion, allowing the so-called individual mandate to move forward.
The government argued requiring Americans to purchase health insurance was allowed under the Commerce Clause. The Chief Justice says no, but instead treats the mandate like a tax and therefore no new federal authority.
Roberts was joined by the four liberal Justices: Sotomayor, Kagan, Breyer and Ginsburg. Conservative Justices Alito, Scalia and Thomas were joined by Justice Kennedy, often seen as a swing vote, in dissent.
One part of the law was struck down the court limiting a Medicaid expansion passed on to the states, but by and large, a big win for the Obama administration.
At the U.S. Supreme Court, Jared Halpern, FOX News Radio.
READ the following quote from Chief Justice John Roberts:
From the opinion of the Court:
“The Affordable Care Act is constitutional in part and unconstitutional in part The individual mandate cannot be upheld as an exercise of Congress’s power under the Commerce Clause. That Clause authorizes Congress to regulate interstate commerce, not to order individuals to engage it. In this case, however, it is reasonable to construe what Congress has done as increasing taxes on those who have a certain amount of income, but choose to go without health insurance. Such legislation is within Congress’s power to tax.”
WATCH to learn more on the Supreme Court’s ruling:
The ruling comes on one of the most closely-watched cases in U.S. history, a law that took a long and winding road before coming to fruition.
FOX News Radio’s Hank Weinbloom takes us on the journey through healthcare in the U.S.:
The history of healthcare reform goes way back, 100 years back. In 1912 – the year the Titanic sank – the Progressive Party and their candidate, Theodore Roosevelt, put forward a platform proposal for health insurance.
(Theodore Roosevelt) “This social security measure…”
It was the second Roosevelt, F.D.R., who pushed through Social Security, a forced-savings program that gave some money to retired people to pay for doctor visits. An even bigger escalation happened during Lyndon Johnson’s presidency.
(Lyndon Johnson) “No longer will older Americans be denied the healing miracle of modern medicine.”
Medicare for seniors, Medicaid for low-income Americans. Many Republicans supported these “Great Society” programs, even while they worried about the cost and the rapidly-growing role of Government in people’s lives. But liberal Democrats, like Senator Edward Kennedy, wanted more.
(Edward Kennedy) “Decent quality healthcare…”
They wanted universal health coverage.
Bill and Hillary Clinton tried in the 1990’s, proposing a law that would require companies to provide health insurance – and people to buy it – all regulated by the government.
(Bill Clinton) “Cover the unemployed uninsured through public funds.”
Republicans mounted furious opposition:
(Ad) “Things are changing…”
Best remembered by a series of political ads featuring a fictional couple, Harry and Louise, criticizing the plan.
(Ad) “Having choices we don’t like is no choice at all.” “If they choose, we lose.”
The Clinton health plan failed.
But when George W. Bush was President, he pushed through improved health care coverage for millions of older Americans with the Medicare Part D prescription drug plan.
(George W. Bush) “I believe a good health care system is one that rewards the consumer…”
Many conservatives didn’t like it. Then, with the 2008 election:
(Barack Obama) “Change is happening in America…”
Even with the economy in a major recession, President Barack Obama pushed hard for an overhaul of Americans healthcare.
(Barack Obama) “There are now more than 30 million American citizens who can not get coverage.”
People on both sides of the argument started calling it “ObamaCare.” Mitch McConnell and Republicans hated it.
(Mitch McConnell) “It’s the single worst piece of legislation that’s been passed in my time in the Senate.”(Nancy Pelosi) “On this vote, the yays are 220…”
Despite having virtually no Republican support:
(Nancy Pelosi) “The bill is passed.”
The healthcare law passed Congress, and was signed by President Obama.
(Barack Obama) “We are done.”
“A big ‘effing deal,” is how Vice President Joe Biden described it. The new law was designed to make health care affordable for everyone, including those with pre-existing conditions and people who change jobs. But the plan included an “individual mandate,” requiring people to buy health insurance or face a penalty if they don’t.
(Challenge) “Using the Constitutional Commerce Clause to force people to buy a product goes beyond Congress’s enumerated powers.”
There were rulings for and against the law through the court system, until it reached the U.S. Supreme Court.
(Anthony Kennedy) “It changes the relationship of the Federal government to the individual in a very fundamental way.”
Justice Anthony Kennedy, often considered a swing vote in close cases, seemed skeptical about the government mandate, as did Chief Justice John Roberts.
(John Roberts) “So, can the government require you to buy a cellphone because that would facilitate responding when you need emergency services?”
And now, the ruling. One of the most controversial cases, one of the most anticipated decisions in American history from the highest court in the land.
Hank Weinbloom, FOX News Radio.