Reports: U.S. Supreme Court upholds Obamacare subsidiesPresident Barack Obama. Source: Elizabeth Cromwell, Wikimedia commons
This story has been updated.
It looks like the Affordable Care Act – also known as Obamacare – is here to stay.
On Thursday the U.S. Supreme Court issued a 6-3 ruling against a legal challenge to subsidies provided to residents of states that did not set up healthcare exchanges, according to the New York Times. The plaintiffs in the case, King v. Burwell, contended that the subsides should only be available to people living in states that had set up the exchanges.
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If the subsidies had been overturned, it could’ve jeopardized the health insurance of millions of Americans. The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that 400,0000 Georgians are receiving Obamacare subsidies.
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State Sen. Elena Parent, SD-42, said the Supreme Court made the right decision.
“I’m so excited,” Parent said. “I think that was obviously the common sense interpretation from what Congress intended, and that to rule otherwise would’ve simply been an ideological shot at the policy itself versus what was clearly intended. It would wreak havoc. Millions of Americans would be in danger of losing their coverage.”
State Rep. Mary Margaret Oliver, D-Decatur, agreed.
“I’m delighted 400,000 Georgians that have benefited from purchasing insurance can now feel secure and healthcare can continue,” Oliver said. “This is a relief for many of us who are looking for a better healthcare system for the uninsured.”
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed released the following statement in response to the ruling:
Today’s Supreme Court ruling reflects a clear reading of the Affordable Care Act and respects how Congress intended the law to be implemented. Access to affordable healthcare is now the right of every American, and I congratulate President Barack Obama and the members of Congress who worked to pass the Affordable Care Act. The ACA is now the law of the land, and millions of Americans are healthier and more financially secure as a result.
Marketplace subsidies are a critical tool in ensuring that every American in every state has access to affordable healthcare. Thanks to this ruling, more than 400,000 people in Georgia alone will continue to receive their insurance reimbursements. Had this misguided, partisan lawsuit succeeded, these Georgians would have faced a 381 percent increase in their health insurance premiums.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson also weighed in.
Today, for the second time, the Supreme Court has upheld the Affordable Care Act. The Court’s decision ensures that all eligible Americans, regardless of where they live, have access to tax credits that help them afford life-saving health care.
This decision is a victory for common sense and all American families, millions of whom can now breathe a sigh of relief knowing their access to medical care is no longer threatened. Having now lost in the Supreme Court twice, Republicans would be wise to end their efforts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act once and for all. After 60 votes to repeal or undermine the law, the GOP assault on the newfound health security of millions of Americans has proven to be a fool’s errand and an obscene waste of taxpayer dollars. I urge leaders in my home state of Georgia to stop obstructing equal access to healthcare and expand Medicaid immediately.
State House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams (D-Atlanta) said …
Today the Supreme Court affirmed that subsidies granted under the Affordable Care Act should be available for all Americans. I am encouraged by the court’s overwhelmingly positive decision to protect healthcare access for the more than 400,000 Georgians who depend on affordable coverage. However, more work must be done to ensure that all Americans have healthcare, no matter where they live. Too many families still have to choose between paying their medical bills and putting food on the table or getting a good education, and that must change. I look forward to working with my colleagues to provide Georgians in every corner of our state with the resources to lead healthy and productive lives.
State House Minority Whip Carolyn Hugley (D- Columbus) said …
Today’s ruling by the Supreme Court is an enormous victory for hundreds of thousands of Georgians who will now be able to keep their health insurance. This momentous decision brings us one step closer to a future where hard-working American will not be denied access to healthcare – and my colleagues and I will continue to fight to ensure that every Georgian has affordable health coverage.
State Rep. Pat Gardner (D- Atlanta) said …
Since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, over 400,000 Georgians have received subsidies for health insurance through Healthcare.gov, which proves that citizens want affordable healthcare. The subsidies are an important step in the right direction as we work to help Georgia’s families access the care they need to thrive.