Poll: Share Your Thoughts on Supreme Court Obamacare Ruling

Tell us what you think about the court's decision that the 'individual mandate,' centerpiece of Affordable Health Care Act, does not violate the Constitution.


Since the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the "individual mandate," the centerpiece of the Affordable Health Care Act that President Obama signed into law last year, Patch readers have weighed in by the hundreds to share their opinions.

Though the ruling happened more than a week ago, our readers continue to debate the proposal, so we're re-featuring the poll that led to this debate. Because the argument hasn't died down, we figure some of you who missed the original story may have new opinions to offer.

To review, five of the nine justices agreed that the key to the act—the requirement that people either buy health insurance or pay a tax penalty—is allowed under Congress' ability to impose using its taxing power.

Local Reaction:


Because that mandate survived, the Court did not need to decide which 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.

Other details of the high court's ruling on what is often referred to as "Obamacare" are still being examined. 

The controversial law has been the subject of recent TV commercials, political speeches and protests.

Since everyone else is weighing in, we want to know what you think.

Answer our poll question and tell us in the comments how you feel about the court's decision. 

Libby Evoloved October 08, 2012 at 03:43 PM
TB, there is no doubt that insurance companies benefit, but as long as more lives are saved and costs go down, that's largely irrelevant. If people who gambled with their lives by choosing not to purchase health care, actually paid for that choice, I might agree with you. But the fact is they get sick and we pay to help them. Now I have ZERO problem helping someone who can NOT afford health care, but I do not want to pay for people who are cheap and greedy. Just as I don't mind paying for government and food assistance for the poor, but don't want to pay for oil subsidies and welfare for corporations who pay no taxes or romney-ians to hide their money overseas to avoid their patriotic duty of paying their share.
Donald Lee October 08, 2012 at 05:56 PM
If the desire is to choose who you support and withhold support from those things you oppose, there are lots of vehicles for your charity, and I salute your involvement and contributions. Government, however, is a terrible vehicle for what you want, because by nature *everyone* pays for it, whether you like it or not, and *everyone* gets the same thing out of it - be it wars, postal services, or health care. Milton Friedman said it best. He told us that in the marketplace, if 60 people want red ties, and 40 people want green ties, 60 people get red and 40 people buy green, because in the market, each one gets to choose. In government (democracy), those same 100 people vote, and if 60 of them want red, then 100 people get red ties, because that is the result of the vote. The red-tie people "win" and the green tie people "lose". This is why government generates conflict, because in the market, there are no winners or losers, only those who choose. Government pits people against one another. Whenever possible, choices should be left to individuals.
Colin Lee October 08, 2012 at 06:49 PM
Donald, this is a bizarre comment. Government is not incapable of accommodating choices. Take Minnesota's Public Employee Insurance Program. Every employee gets to choose from one's own choice of insurance plans and providers. Obamacare works exactly the same way. What about if 100 neighbors need their trash hauled away? 10 choose red, 30 choose blue, 50 choose green. All one hundred neighbors pay too much, have too much traffic, and need to pay street assessments to fix their roads years earlier than normal because heavy trucks cause hundreds or thousands of times more damage. Imagine if every single neighbor had to hire a street repair company or snow plow for their small section of the street. You would never get to work.
Donald Lee October 08, 2012 at 07:05 PM
No, I think the idea that because sometimes collective action is more efficient, government should do EVERYTHING is bizarre. Look at the controversy in Maplewood. Trash hauling is a good case where the pros and cons are close enough for a good argument, and recently the city council forced all residents to go through a specified hauler. Predictably, those who don't like that hauler - for various reasons - are unhappy. Those who favored the reduced traffic, etc, are happy. Longer term, bet on the newly created monopoly raising prices, and being accused of corruption. Bet on it. The bottom line, though, is that the people getting their trash hauled all got "red ties". The truly bizarre comment is that government "accommodates choices .... like Obamacare". This reminds me of the parent who wants a child to choose a food. Knowing that the child would choose candy, the parent presents a choice - peas or carrots. In the same way government "accommodates choice". First it takes choice away, and then presents a very narrow choice of "approved" choices. This is exactly what Obamacare does, and is not "choice". The point is not that government cannot present choices, or that it should do nothing. The point is that whenever possible, it should not intervene, because wherever it chooses for us, we lose our power to choose. That's not bizarre, it's simple logic.
Donald Lee October 08, 2012 at 07:23 PM
Good info for people discussing this topic: http://healthreformquestions.com/ Follow the links. It is well researched and sourced.


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