Bothell's Sen. Murray, other state officials speak out on Supreme Court's upholding of health-care law
June 28, 2012 · 5:29 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the 2010 Affordable Care Act on June 28. The Court ruled that the federal requirement to purchase health insurance —specifically a plan dictated by government regulators — does not violate the Constitution.
The states argued that the Constitution’s Commerce Clause allows Congress to regulate commerce among the states, but does not allow it to force Americans to engage in commerce. A majority of the Court agreed, but the Court ultimately ruled that the mandate is constitutional under Congress’ taxing power.
U.S. Sen. Patty Murray from Bothell said the decision is a victory for the health-care security and stability of Washington families.
“Today’s ruling means that families and small-business owners will continue to benefit from better access, more choices and a health-care system that no longer works only for those who can afford it. It means that health-care decisions will be in the hands of patients and their doctors, and that insurance companies will be forced to compete for the business of Washington state families," she said.
Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna added that the U.S. system of government provides a series of checks and balances, allowing new laws — especially ones that raise major constitutional questions — to be tested in court.
"While we’re disappointed that this close decision did not find in the states’ favor with regard to the individual mandate, the country benefits from a thoughtful debate about the reach of federal power into the legal rights of the states and the personal financial decisions of all Americans," he said.
A stable, healthier future has been made possible by this ruling, said King County Executive Dow Constantine.
"This is affirmation of our nationwide bold move toward achieving quality affordable health care, and we are moving in the right direction. And for the nearly quarter of a million people in King County who do not have health insurance, this is truly a welcome life-and-death decision," he said.