On Thursday, June 28 the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its ruling on the Affordable Care Act, upholding the main components of the controversial law that would mandate majority of American citizens to get health care.
The justices came to 5-4 ruling, with conservative Chief Justice John Robert Jr. joining the liberal wing. The main components of the act were upheld, ruling that requiring almost all Americans to obtain health care is constitutional under Congress’s tax authority, although it was concluded that it was unconstitutional under the Commerce clause.
The justices did, however, rule that withdrawing Medicaid funding from states that decide not to participate in a broad expansion of Medicaid eligibility was unconstitutional. It was ruled unconstitutional because it threatened those states who would not want to comply with the expansion with loss of Medicaid federal funds.
Under the broad expansion, “Medicaid is trans-formed into a program to meet the health care needs of the entirenonelderly population with income below 133 percent of the poverty level,” according to the ruling.
With the Affordable Care Act largely deemed constitutional, majority of Americans are expected to buy health insurance starting in 2014 or face a penalty.
The ruling comes five months before the 2012 presidential election.
To read the ruling, click here.
Pictures from outside the Supreme Court during oral arguments for the Affordable Care Act, here.