First, Republicans should take solace in the fact that Chief Justice John Roberts basically said “let’s not mince words here … this mandate is a tax. As long as we call it what it is, it’s constitutional.” This gives the Grover Norquist devotees more fodder.
Second, this is a win for Obama on the “legitimacy” question. A defeat on this law would have added to the rhetoric that Obama is an un-American violator of the Constitution. That rhetorical argument is now dead.
Third, we have affirmed as a nation that it is unconscionable for the wealthiest country on the face of the Earth to allow its citizens to be bankrupted by catastrophic health problems.
The GOP response to this decision is a plan to vote for repeal in the House on July 11. This is an incredibly petty move in my opinion.
What does it mean for the election in November? Not much I’m afraid. A negative decision from the court might have hurt Obama badly but this “win” doesn’t change things much. Jobs are still the biggest issue in this election and it is still Obama’s task to convince the American people that he can create jobs and that Romney’s experience does not prepare him to do the same.
What are your thoughts?
Photo by White House (Pete Souza) (White HouseOlder upload from here) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons