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POLL: Do You Agree With the Supreme Court's Decision to Uphold the Health Care Act?

Officials in Washtenaw County weigh-in on the health care reform bill–dubbed "Obamacare" by opponents following Thursday's Supreme Court ruling.

The most controversial clause of the Affordable Care Act has been upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court, the court announced Thursday.

The group of bills aimed at overhauling the American health care system was signed into law by President Barack Obama in March 2010. Since then, 26 states filed suit against the act, stating that provisions in it required most uninsured Americans to purchase health insurance were unconstitutional.

According to the Washington Post, the Supreme Court agreed that the mandate itself is unconstitutional, but that it is within the rights of Congress to tax individuals for not having health care. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion.

The ruling also upheld a portion of the bill that asks states to expand their Medicaid coverage, but said that the federal government cannot without Medicaid funding for states that choose not to comply.

Congressman John Dingell, an ardent supporter of the act who represents Michigan's 15th District in the U.S. House of Representatives, applauded the ruling.

“We have a long-term effective solution to the health care crisis in this country," Dingell said in a statement. "And, now, I am proud to say that with the agreement of the Supreme Court, we can continue on with the business of making sure Americans have access to the best medicines, hospitals and medical professionals in the world.

"I know my father who started this fight is smiling from up above.”

Chelsea Community Hospital CEO Nancy Graebner said the hospital is pleased with the Supreme Court's ruling.

"With a belief that access and coverage for all is both a moral and practical imperative, Chelsea Community Hospital is pleased with the Supreme Court’s decision, based on an initial read of the ruling. While we do not believe the Affordable Care Act to be perfect, it advances the creation of a health system that works for everyone," Graebner said.

"Chelsea Community Hospital’s core mission is to provide exceptional health care to our communities. With that in mind, we look forward to the advantages that the Affordable Care Act offers to those we serve," she continued. "The individual insurance requirement is an essential element in the successful transformation of our nation’s health care system because it will enhance access to regular and preventive care in the appropriate setting, reduce inefficient use of health care resources, and enable health care providers like us to provide more coordinated, integrated and truly patient-centered care."

State Rep.Mark Ouimet, R-Scio Township, said the ruling sets a bad precedent for future legislation.

"The Supreme Court's ruling on Obamacare is an unfortunate decision for Michigan's middle-class families. I am concerned about the effects this will have on the people of this state, their budgets and their healthcare decisions," Ouimet said. "While today's ruling is incredibly disappointing for all of us, I will now do everything I can to find the best path forward for this state and protect Michigan residents."

"The state Legislature, will consider every option that makes the lives of Michigan residents better and prevents the federal government from micromanaging our health-care decisions," Ouimet continued. "Our ultimate goal is to find a system that works for Michigan and keeps the people of this state healthy and free."

Ouimet said the Legislature is currently working on a bill that would give Michigan insurance providers the freedom to participate in a health care exchange, but would also ensure they could sell their products outside of an exchange.

"We'll explore the legislation further, as well as other options in the coming weeks and months," he said.

Do you agree with the Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act? Vote in our poll and tell us why you agree or disagree in the comments.

Ellen Bunting June 29, 2012 at 02:09 PM
Middle Class families are going to be the ones who benefit from much of the law. It's the middle class with insurance who can now keep their kids on until age 26. Anyone with insurance will now not run into a cap in the event of a catastrophic illness. Anyone with a pre-existing condition will now be able to get insurance where they could not before. Many people who are middle class but without an employer sponsored plan will now be able to shop on the health insurance exchange and find the lowest best plan, which will be subsidized for many middle class earners. Oh, but wait, that's right, the republicans in the house refused to authorize setting up those exchanges and Michigan is almost 2 years behind fulfilling the obligation under this law and the middle class will certainly suffer for it. Most importantly, the middle class will no longer have to pay for other people's health care because they will be paying for it themselves - it is only those without health insurance who will be paying the mandate which I suppose will be called a tax forevermore. So middle class voters take a look at the benefits you will receive before you buy what Rep Ouimet is selling.
Deb Hutton June 29, 2012 at 02:48 PM
I think that people should look into what this means for small employers and their hiring practices. It will obviously be a damper on new job creation. This mandate did nothing to improve the quality of health care delivery, it just shifted the cost to the states and upped the costs to small businesses. This will actually bankrupt many state governments which are already in debt.
Ed June 29, 2012 at 06:57 PM
The Supreme Court has now lost all credibility. If mandating the purchase of an item does not violate individual freedom, then what does? The ridiculous invention of calling this requirement a tax is absurd. Clearly the court is politically motivated and was simply looking for any justification it could find to uphold it. Everyone is focused on Justice Roberts, but what about the other four who chose to vote their liberal agenda rather than look at the Constitution? These people need to go back to school and read about the Revolutionary War and the Founding Fathers. Clearly they are so senile that they don't remember Madison, Jefferson, and Franklin. Too bad the Constitution doesn't provide for term limits on Justices.
lgm June 30, 2012 at 04:01 PM
Under President Reagan it became law that a hospital could not turn you away if you did not have health insurance, and since that time people have been complaining about how the un-insured have been freeloading off of the health care system while our insurance premiums have gone up in order to cover them. The mandate/tax stops those who can afford health insurance from freeloading. The mandate was a Republican idea from the beginning, even before Romney put it into law in Massachusetts. We make drivers buy car insurance, isn't that a mandate? Change is good. Our health care system is the most expensive to run in the world and covers the least amount of people. We are the ONLY civilized country in the world that makes a profit off of the sick and dying. This is a good start. People will not be denied health coverage anymore, and insurance companies have to put back 80% of their profits back into insuring people. The employers who pay for their employees health insurance are going to get rebates, not have to pay more. I don't see how this is going to be a burden on small businesses. That's a lie. The Affordable Care Act is not perfect, and not a solution, but it's a start.
lgm July 01, 2012 at 04:30 PM
"Good care, choice of providers and well-trained doctors are not cheap." Yes, you said it correctly, if you can afford it, you can get great medical care. I hear the argument of foreigners coming here for treatment all time and find it irrelevant. The amount of people coming here for health care is so small, and only for the super rich. The majority of people who have socialized medical care in their country are happy with it and would never want to give it up. Most countries see our health care system as an example what NOT to do. Look up the ranking of our health care system and our mortality rates, and you will see we are not the best. If we want to be among the best in the world we need to go to a single payer system that will cover all Americans. Then we will truly have good care, a choice of providers and well-trained doctors who will be accessible to all.

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