Congressman Steven Palazzo (R-MS), Mississippi's fourth congressional representative, released the following statement today in response to the Supreme Court's ruling on the health care law. The Supreme Court upheld key provisions of the law -- the individual mandate - in a 5-4 decision, with Justice John Roberts acting as the deciding vote and writing the court's majority opinion.
"Over the past two years, our nation has engaged in debate over the future of our country and the future of health care reform. Today, I am disappointed that the Supreme Court has ruled in disagreement with myself and the two-thirds of the American public who feel this law is unconstitutional.
"The Supreme Court may have ruled to uphold the law for now, but that does not change the fact that it is bad for small business, bad for families and bad for seniors. It puts an enormous burden of regulations and tax hikes on businesses, takes health choices out of the hands of individuals and doctors, and places more control in the hands of government bureaucrats. The very fact that twenty-six states brought suit --- and that only a third of the public supports this legislation --- tells me that we have good reason to keep working to repeal and replace this law. Not with another rushed, comprehensive, overreaching bill --- but with step-by-step solutions that reduce the costs of health care."
The court stated that the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate could be upheld as constitutional because it is considered a tax and Congress has taxing power. In the majority opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts stated that while "the Federal Government does not have the power to order people to buy health insurance [it] does have the power to impose a tax on those without health insurance. Section 5000A [the individual mandate] is therefore constitutional, because it can reasonably be read as a tax."