• August 1, 2021

Exclusive: Supreme Court upholds the Affordable Care Act

 Exclusive: Supreme Court upholds the Affordable Care Act

Supporters rally in front of the Supreme Court after the court's announcment of the decision affirming the Affordable Care Act on  June 25, 2015, in Washington, DC. US President Barack Obama on Thursday hailed the Supreme Court's decision to uphold his legacy-gilding health care law, casting the ruling as a victory for Americans, not just him. "Today is a victory for hard-working Americans all across this country, whose lives will continue to become more secure in a changing economy because of this law," he said, in a White House address. AFP PHOTO/PAUL J. RICHARDS        (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP via Getty Images)

Again, the ACA is here to stay.

The Affordable Care Act lives to fight on to the next ridiculous challenge supported by Trumpist lower court judges. The Supreme Court ruled 7-2 Thursday that the plaintiffs in the case—the state of Texas and the individuals challenging—do not have standing to challenge the unenforceable mandate. The decision was written by Justice Stephen Breyer, with just Justices Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch in dissent.

“A plaintiff has standing only if he can ‘allege personal injury fairly traceable to the defendant’s allegedly unlawful conduct and likely to be redressed by the requested relief,'” the Court writes. “Neither the individual nor the state plaintiffs have shown that the injury they will suffer or have suffered is ‘fairly traceable’ to the ‘allegedly unlawful conduct’ of which they complain.”

The Court did not rule on the issue of the constitutionality of the law, which Alito and Gorsuch wanted to get into. The best-case decision for protecting the law would have been the Court deciding that the individual mandate—the part Texas was challenging—could be carved out of the whole law without making the rest of the law crumble; that the individual mandate is severable from the rest of the law. That does leave a small opening—a very narrow path—for conservative Federalist Society type lawyers to keep the grift going, looking for the next challenge.

However, for the third time the Supreme Court has upheld Obamacare. And four of the court’s conservatives said so. That’s a big fucking deal, to quote former Vice President Biden.

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