The Roberts Court has ruled in favor of The Affordable Care Act on two different occasions. Several years ago the Court made a ruling that rejected some of the Administrations arguments but allowed the law to stand under the argument that the legislation is a tax and as such, is a legal act of the legislature or Congress. This upset the conservatives who argued the Administration and Congress had no authority to rewrite America’s healthcare policies. This year, the Court had an opportunity to correct what many perceived as an error last time.
The question before the Justices was, “Does the law mean what the words actually say or do they mean what some people think they should mean.” The Affordable Care Act states that the health care premiums are to be subsidized based on income and paid through exchanges established by the states and funded by the Federal Government. Because the premiums continue to be subsidized in future years, and Federal funds will decrease each year, many of the States will be forced to pay the subsidies. Their calculations show this will bankrupt their states. Because of this, many states refused to establish the exchanges. The law specifically states the Federal Government will subsidize the state exchanges. The Obama Administration has been subsidizing individuals from states where no exchange exists.
A lawsuit was filed because tax money was being illegally spent. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Administration. This is the final case for the Affordable Care Act. It will continue to be the law of the land until Congress votes otherwise and a President signs a new bill.
The second ruling related to same-sex marriages. The Court ruled that all states must allow same-sex marriages and must recognize these marriages from different states. The Court made a point of saying that those who oppose this ruling on moral or religious grounds shall not be punished for their beliefs. The State of Oregon ruled the couple who refused an order to make a wedding cake for a gay couple shall pay a fine of $135,000. The judge on that case imposed a gag order on the couple. They are not permitted to voice their religious views or discuss the case. This seems, to me, to be a direct conflict with the ruling the Supremes handed down. Maybe the Court will have a chance to rule on this case in the future.
Originally I was upset with this ruling. I have a personal belief system that opposes gay marriage for religious reasons. I have always favored special status for gay couples, but I opposed marriage. Since I have had time to reflect on this ruling, I have come to support it. I guess it’s my Libertarian thought processes coming through. What business is it of mine what other couples do? As long as their decision does not hurt me, and it doesn’t, then they should be free to do as they please. It is not my right to impose my views on others.