Obama champions Supreme Court decision as “victory for people all over this country”
The ruling is a major relief for the president.
President Obama on Thursday hailed the Supreme Court’s decision to let his signature healthcare law stand, calling it a “victory for the American people.”
“Whatever the politics, today’s decision was a victory for people all over this country,” Obama said.
The ruling was a major relief for the White House and an affirmation of the president’s most significant domestic act (Joe Biden called it a big f*cking deal). But Obama focused his remarks on the benefits of the law, including the individual mandate that was at the center of the Court’s decision.
The president said that a ban on withholding coverage because of preexisting conditions and the mandate would allow millions of uninsured Americans to obtain health insurance.
He also noted that his Republican opponent Mitt Romney, whom he referred to as “the current Republican nominee for president,” supported a mandate in a healthcare law he passed as governor of Massachusetts in 2002. Romney has pushed back on that notion, claiming a major difference between a state and federal mandate.
Obama acknowledged that the law is largely unpopular among the general public, noting the “divisive” debate over the legislation that consumed his first term.
“It should be pretty clear by now that I didn’t do this because it’s good politics,” he said.
But the president said that the country would be able to look back and say that it was the right thing to do.
“The highest court in this land has now spoken,” he said. “We’ll be better off because we had the courage to pass this law and keep moving forward.”
(Photo: Flickr, White House)