Supreme Court Sides With Obamacare Yet Again

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The original Obamacare legislation created something called “risk corridors,” which guaranteed insurers certain payments if they lost money on the exchanges. Republicans have been trying ever since to cut off the payments, arguing that they were never appropriated. The insurers, conversely, argue that they joined the exchanges in good faith, assuming that the word of the federal government was sufficient to guarantee them payment if they suffered unexpected losses.

Today the Supreme Court ruled that Obamacare should be allowed to work as intended. That’s good news. The better news is that the ruling was 8-1, with only Samuel Alito dissenting. Perhaps I’m being overly optimistic here, but this might signal that the Court is getting tired of endless challenges to Obamacare. If that’s the case, it means they’re likely to toss out the ridiculous challenge being brought by Republican governors later this year. They claim that the individual mandate penalty can no longer be considered a tax because Congress zeroed it out in 2017 and you can’t have a zero tax. The governors go on to argue that if it’s not a tax, then the mandate is unconstitutional; and if the mandate is unconstitutional then the entire act is unconstitutional.

Aside from everything else, the patent absurdity of Congress being able to yo-yo between constitutional and unconstitutional simply by passing changes to a tax rate should give everyone pause. And perhaps it will.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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