Courts & Law

High court upholds Obamacare

UNITED STATES Supreme Court building (Flickr/Geoff Livingston).

For the third time, the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as “Obamacare.”

Today (Thursday), the high court – on a 7-2 vote – turned aside a challenge from Texas and other states on the basis that they had no right to sue on the health insurance program used by upwards of 30 million people.

In an opinion written by Justice Stephen Breyer, the court held that the plaintiffs “have failed to show that they have standing to attack as unconstitutional the Act’s minimum essential coverage provision.”

Dissenting were justices Neil Gorsuch and Samuel Alito.

Repeal or invalidating the ACA has been a goal of Republican leaders since its approval in 2010. Expanding the program is planned by President Joe Biden and it seems to be gaining in popularity.

The Associated Press quotes a Kaiser Family Foundation poll that indicates that support for “Obamacare” has risen from 43 percent in December 2016 to 54 percent this February.

Court backs Catholic agency on foster care by gays

A unanimous U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday ruled in favor of a Catholic social services agency’s policy on foster care by same-sex couples.

According to The New York Times, the court’s ruling focused not on the broader issue of discrimination based on sexual orientation but on the City of Philadelphia’s contract with foster care agencies.

The contract forbids such discrimination, but allows city officials to make exceptions.

“The creation of a system of exceptions under the contract undermines the city’s contention that its nondiscrimination policies can brook no departures,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the majority opinion.

Three more conservative members of the court – Gorsuch, Alito and Clarence Thomas – expressed disappointment that larger issues of “religious liberty” were not addressed more directly.


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