EDITORIAL: Affordable Care Act back in front of the Supreme Court



The Affordable Care Act, better known to Americans as Obamacare, is in front of the Supreme Court--again. Since being signed into law in 2010, there has been nothing but issues surrounding all aspects of this act. The most current dispute pertains to whether citizens should receive tax credits for purchasing their health insurance through Healthcare.gov.

According to TheSkimm, Obamacare stipulated that each state was responsible for setting up a marketplace through which residents would be able to purchase their health insurance. However, only 13 states, plus Washington DC, have complied in establishing these marketplaces. So that means Americans in the remaining 32 states must turn to Healthcare.gov, which is the government’s platform to be used when purchasing insurance.

Americans who use the state marketplaces are supposed to receive tax credits in order to help pay for the insurance they are required, by law, to obtain whether that be through an employer or one of these exchanges. As the law currently stands, these health credits are not intended to be given to citizens who utilize Healthcare.gov. However since only 13 states and DC have these websites available to their residents, people have been forced to turn to Healthcare.gov, which has had its own menagerie of problems.

That’s where the current Supreme Court hearings come in. Should tax credits be given to people who used Healthcare.gov or not? If not, then there are millions of Americans who will be unable to afford the health insurance Obamacare mandates they have. If the Supreme Court votes against this, it could very well be the beginning of the end for the Affordable Care Act.

While yes, health care is more affordable for some, and the number of insured people has increased, there have been few moments where it seems like Obamacare is functioning smoothly. The GOP has been against it from the beginning, many Americans who were forced to drop their plans are unhappy and there is the potential for harm to the job market in coming years.

Whatever the Supreme Court decides pertaining to tax credits, it seems as though the Affordable Care Act will continue to receive criticism from all parties. So either the GOP needs to put asside their extreme opposition, or Obama and his administration need to respond to the criticisms of Obamacare. American citizens cannot afford a prolonged political disagreement, as they will still struggle to afford health care. This issue is too important, too essential to citizens' basic rights, for our legislators to wallow in the ideological muck of red versus blue.