Per the excellent live coverage at SCOTUSBlog of the Supreme Court’s decision in the constitutional challenge to the Affordable Care Act,
The bottom line: the entire ACA is upheld, with the exception that the federal government’s power to terminate states’ Medicaid funds is narrowly read.
The reporters had quick access to physical copies of the opinion, and found the explanation of the Mandate Status in the majority opinion.
“Our precedent demonstrates that Congress had the power to impose the exaction in Section 5000A under the taxing power, and that Section 5000A need not be read to do more than impose a tax. This is sufficient to sustain it. “
Updates, with links to the full opinions, to follow.
UPDATE: SCOTUSBlog‘s Amy Howe has a great bird’s eye view:
In Plain English: The Affordable Care Act, including its individual mandate that virtually all Americans buy health insurance, is constitutional. There were not five votes to uphold it on the ground that Congress could use its power to regulate commerce between the states to require everyone to buy health insurance. However, five Justices agreed that the penalty that someone must pay if he refuses to buy insurance is a kind of tax that Congress can impose using its taxing power. That is all that matters. Because the mandate survives, the Court did not need to decide what other parts of the statute were constitutional, except for a provision that required states to comply with new eligibility requirements for Medicaid or risk losing their funding. On that question, the Court held that the provision is constitutional as long as states would only lose new funds if they didn’t comply with the new requirements, rather than all of their funding.
UPDATE: Supreme Court Opinion now posted online.
Readers, as providers, managers, employees what are your reactions?