Despite the simple wording, “established by the state” would only be allowed to offer ObamaCare, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that people who signed up through the federal marketplace can continue to receive subsidies. Thirty-seven states didn’t set up such exchanges.
Progressives claimed voiding the law would’ve caused individual plan insurance prices to skyrocket in two-thirds of the U.S. and a loss of health coverage for people in states served by the federal insurance marketplace. They also claimed that it would have created a segregated country in terms of individual health insurance.
Because of the Supreme Court’s decision, the so-called “employer mandate,” requiring larger employers to offer affordable health insurance to their workers or pay a fine also remains in place. The ruling also keeps the individual mandate requiring most Americans to have some form of health coverage or pay a tax penalty.
Chief Justice John Roberts, who was widely criticized by for his previous determination that ObamaCare was constitutional, authored the decision.
“The upshot of all this is that the phrase ‘an Exchange established by the State under [42 U. S. C. §18031]’ is properly viewed as ambiguous. The phrase may be limited in its reach to State Exchanges. But it is also possible that the phrase refers to all Exchanges — both State and Federal — at least for purposes of the tax credits,” he wrote.
Roberts’ opinion was countered by Justice Antonin Scalia.
“Today’s interpretation is not merely unnatural; it is unheard of. Who would ever have dreamt that ‘Exchange established by the State’ means ‘Exchange established by the State or the Federal Government’?” he wrote.
“We should start calling this law SCOTUScare,” he added.
Fox News legal analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano also had little nice to say about Roberts.
“Last time around when the government said it was not a tax and the challengers said it was not a tax, the chief justice ruled it was a tax and that saved it,” Napolitano said. “This time around he took the plain meaning of ordinary words, ‘established by the states,’ and somehow held that they were ambiguous, and that he could, and that the majority could, correct the ambiguity according to what they thought the drafters meant.”
It’s like watching a condemned man dig his own grave.