To the dismay of fiscal conservatives everywhere, on June 28th, the Supreme Court upheld Obamacare by a 5-4 vote. The deciding vote, unexpectedly by Bush-appointee Chief Justice John Roberts, has been the source of much discussion and debate. Some claim that he did it to preserve the reputation and public approval of the Supreme Court as a branch of government, others say he just caved in to pressure. Regardless, few agree with the ruling, which allows the government to fine/tax citizens who have not bought healthcare insurance. In essence, it takes away the right of citizens to decide what to do with their own money. While Obama and Nancy Pelosi argued it was not a tax, the Supreme Court’s ruling largely depended on it being classified as a tax, which is how Colorado Democrat Jared Polis described it. The tax issue, while relevant, pales in comparison to the power the law extends to the government.
Many still hope that a conservative/libertarian majority in congress, combined with Obama’s losing re-election, will allow for the repeal of the act. The ruling happening in the months leading up to the general election could incentivize many people otherwise ambivalent about voting for Republicans they see as too moderate, or with whom they disagree on certain issues, to participate in the elections. Further motivation comes from the fact that the Supreme Court, which is currently evenly balanced between left and right, could see as many as three new appointees in the next four years, which would give the next president the ability to control the Supreme Court for the forseeable future.
The general election presents a chance, for the first time in decades, for the citizens of Boulder County to help elect a congress able to repeal something so economically, culturally and socially destructive. Conservatives across the state now face stronger opposition in the next election, but residents of the Second Congressional District, including Boulder County, have a chance to help repeal this. Jared Polis claimed that Obamacare was not a takeover of the healthcare industry. His Republican opponent, Kevin Lundberg issued a statement after the ruling calling it a “blank check” for Congress, and linking it to the “ever growing overreach of the federal government.” He also noted that Jared Polis had personally invested in the healthcare industry based on the political actions he was taking in Washington, using his political position to profit from the policies which have been so economically destructive for others.