Three Reasons to Celebrate the Supreme Court’s Decision on Obamacare

I’m thrilled about today’s SCOTUS decision. The Supreme Court upheld the gist of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Am I surprised? Yes, like pretty much everyone – I didn’t anticipate Chief Justice Roberts’ clever argument about the individual mandate.

What I see in this is first, a win for patients, who now are more likely to get health care if and when they need it – preventive and otherwise. L’Chaim!

Second, it’s a win for the Obama administration and the Democrats. And although I went to journalism school at Columbia University and was told that “real journalists don’t share their opinions,” I do: I’m a registered, reliable, primary-voting Democrat. The ACA is, so far, President Obama’s signature achievement. This SCOTUS decision supports the President’s goal of simultaneously reining in health care costs and expanding coverage to all. It raises the likelihood of President Obama’s re-election. Cheers!

Finally, and at a deeper level, the decision reflects the power of one man’s thoughtfulness to change the outcome of a seemingly bleak situation. (This can happen in oncology and other kinds of medicine, when most of the doctors or specialists on a case throw up their hands or say “it’s impossible because of blah, blah, blah,” and they might refer to some old published studies on old drugs, or something like that.) What Chief Justice Roberts did was think out-of-the box, carefully and within a legal framework. Like a good, smart doctor, morally grounded and, perhaps, influenced by compassion (hard to tell), the Chief Justice figured out a legally acceptable way for his court to do the right thing. By his wisdom, he will have saved more than a few lives. Bravo!

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  • Elaine,

    I’m thrilled too and frankly, very pleasantly surprised! I find it interesting the female judges were all “in.” And good for you for not being afraid to state your opinions and affiliations.

    I join you in saying, “Bravo!”

  • I’m with you and Nancy–I’m surprised too. I was so sure the whole thing would get shot down or the individual mandate would, effectively gutting it.

    I don’t get how we think it’s okay for our healthcare to be contingent on employment. I know someone who went from six figure incomes to widowhood, disability and pleading to get assistance. Those of us who are (temporarily) employed and (temporarily) healthy all think it can’t happen to us. We’re all wrong. I kept wishing President Obama would talk about his mom fighting insurance companies while battling cancer more when trying to make the case. I kept wishing Mr. Romney would stand up and talk about the good things he did in Massachusetts instead of trying to distance himself in the name of winning votes.

    P.S. I didn’t remember you have a journalism degree. LIke you, I’m a j-school grad and like you, I was trained to be impartial. If I worked for a paper I would try to be but I think a lot of that’s gone out the window. I see a lot of reported stuff that should be called opinion but is not.

  • Thank you both.

    My evolving view on journalism is that there is no such thing as objectivity in news, ever, because all reporters and editors frame stories according to their preferences and under-acknowledged biases. If you have a beat about which you know a lot, so much you’ve become an “expert” by doing so, it’s likely you have formed opinions about the subject. This comes through in word choices, photos, selected quotes and other aspects of a story, even in science news, when writers are skeptical or not… Whatever is your motivation to cover a story, I think it’s better to be up front, share what you perceive honestly and accurately (as you see it; there’s no other way), and let readers draw their conclusions.

    This piece, clearly, is straight opinion, and communication of delight!

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