Obamacare and the Roberts Court: A Profile in Courage Moment

Obamacare and the Roberts Court: A Profile in Courage Moment

HORTON

By John Horton

The times are changing….

Occasionally, we witness a significant historical event in our lifetime.

I sincerely believe that the Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision to uphold the National Health Care Affordable Act (Obamacare) is such a time. The majority opinion was written by Chief Justice John Roberts. Six Justices voted for upholding Obamacare: Breyer, Ginsburg, Kagan, Kennedy, Roberts, and Sotomayer. Three Justices voted against upholding Obamacare: Alito, Scalia and Thomas.

Moreover, it should be noted that Chief Justice Roberts voted 5-4 with the four Liberal Justices (Breyer, Ginsburg, Kagan and Sotomayer) in June 2012 to uphold Obamacare.  Roberts also wrote the majority opinion that upheld the 2010 health care law as a valid exercise of Congress’s power to tax.

This time (Thursday, June 26) the Court ruled that Obamacare allows the federal government to provide nationwide tax subsidies to help poor and middle-class citizens purchase health insurance.  Thusly, Obamacare will most likely survive even after Obama leaves office in January 2017.

The case (“King v. Burwell, 14-114”) was filed by four Virginians, saying that Obamacare restricts the federal government from providing subsidies in states that do not have their own exchanges.

Being a supporter, I am pleasantly surprised by the Court’s 6-3 majority decision, including Roberts.

By his actions, Roberts exhibited a “profile in courage” moment.  As aforementioned, Roberts voted with the Liberal Justices upholding Obamacare for the “second” time. In our history, there are times when a “politician” becomes a “statesman.” This is one of those times.

Like many other landmark decisions (civil rights, voting rights and women’s rights) in our history, I firmly believe that the Court made the “right” decision in this particular case.

In my opinion, Roberts and the Court and America will be remembered for doing the “right” thing by upholding this landmark law.

As a result, I believe that the passage of time and the reality of circumstances will prove, eventually, that this landmark decision will advance fairness and equity for all of America’s citizens.

Admittedly, Obamacare will need some amelioration and refinement.  But, we can do this.

For, I believe  that the passage of time will prove that this Court decision will allow us as a nation to have a more Perfect Union for the overall Common Good.