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June 29, 2012
SCOTUS Upholds Obamacare
    by Robert Kropp

Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility applaud yesterday's Supreme Court decision to uphold the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts broke with the majority that gave us Citizens United and cast the deciding vote yesterday in the Court's decision upholding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), the healthcare reform bill crafted by the Obama administration and passed into law by the Senate in 2010.

The Court "reaffirmed a fundamental principle that here in America—in the wealthiest nation on Earth—no illness or accident should lead to any family's financial ruin," President Obama stated after the decision was announced.

"If you're one of the 30 million Americans who don't yet have health insurance, starting in 2014 this law will offer you an array of quality, affordable, private health insurance plans to choose from," he continued.

"The law that the Supreme Court upheld is an act of human decency that is also fiscally responsible," Paul Krugman wrote in the New York Times.

Ironically, the controversial Citizens United decision helped provide opponents of healthcare reform with millions of dollars in their failed attempt to defeat the law. The Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) stated in its Principles for Domestic Health Care, "We note the negative publicity around the reported $86 million given by health insurers to the Chamber of Commerce, much of which was reportedly used to oppose health care reform."

ICCR members have been advocating for adequate health care for all Americans for years, and in 2009 spoke out in favor of the then-proposed legislation. "Health care reform is a moral and a financial issue," David Schilling, program director for human rights at ICCR, said at the time. "It is good for society and good for business."

And in a letter signed by 60 members in November, 2009, 36 corporations that had supported the principles of healthcare reform were asked to publicly state their disagreement with the US Chamber of Commerce's opposition.

ICCR members, in a press release, applauded yesterday's decision by the Court.

"Our health as a society pales in comparison to that of citizens of other nations and the industry is plagued with issues, from fragmentation and uncoordinated care to misaligned incentives and poor evidence of effectiveness across treatment options," ICCR board Chair Sr. Susan Vickers stated. "The reforms ACA brings to the industry are meaningful and hopefully the beginning of a more just and affordable program for all Americans."

Executive Director Laura Berry stated, "Given the relentless assault on ACA by corporate interests like the US Chamber of Commerce which invested tens of millions lobbying to challenge the law and punish elected officials who supported it, we are heartened that the Supreme Court has cast their vote for the American people."


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