The U.S. Supreme Court issued its highly anticipated ruling this morning on a challenge to the constitutionality of the federal health care law passed in 2010.
The court, effectively split on the political front — five conservative and four liberal justices, , which requires all Americans to acquire health insurance coverage by 2014. The court did push back on another front, saying states couldn't be mandated to expand Medicaid or else be stripped of federal funding.
U.S. Congressman John Tierney released a statement Thursday morning in response to the court's ruling, applauding the decision and calling on the law's opponents to "stand down" now and work together to implement the law and reap its benefits.
"The Supreme Court made a responsible decision today. Its ruling is a victory for the millions of Americans who will have the opportunity to access health care, the middle-class families who will see their health care costs decrease, the young Americans who will be able to stay on their insurance until age 26, the seniors who will continue to see the 'donut hole' close, and so many more," Tierney said.
"The law might not be perfect, but it is a step in the right direction for our country, and the Supreme Court made the right decision today," he said.
Tierney's Republican challenger this November, Richard Tisei, also released his own statement, saying federal lawmakers need to "go back to the drawing board" on the issue.
"If anything is clear from today’s Supreme Court ruling it is that our leaders in Washington need to go back to the drawing board, and work together to pass a bi-partisan plan that will reduce rising health care costs and provide Americans with more access to affordable health care coverage," Tisei said.
The former state senator added he was proud to have been part of the effort to pass healthcare reform in Massachusetts and believes all Americans should have access to affordable care, but does not agree with the federal approach.
"Rather than a Washington based 'one size fits all approach,' I believe that every state needs to tailor a plan to their individual needs and that Americans should maintain control over their own healthcare decisions. The Affordable Health Care Act passage was clearly an overreach by an overly partisan Congress that would increase health care costs, damage our economy, and add more than a trillion to our national debt.
Tisei, a Wakefield Republican, is challenging Tierney, a Salem Democrat, for the , which represents Peabody as well as many other North Shore cities and towns.
You can find more information on the Affordable Care Act here: www.healthcare.gov/law/index.html.
So where did you line up on this charged debate? Were you in favor of the healthcare reforms or were you staunchly opposed to Obamacare?
And what do you think now that the highest court in the land has ruled? Sound off below in the comments section.