Supreme Court decision draws local reaction
- Published on 06/28/2012 - 2:43 pm
- Written by Michael Kincheloe
The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act this morning has received mixed reviews from both sides of the political aisle, including those who work in industries that are directly tied to the health care industry.
Kevin Hamilton is deputy chief of programs at Clinica Sierra Vista in Fresno. Hamilton is one of the few individuals who have read the entire Affordable Care Act, and he said that, from a health care perspective, he was pleased with today’s ruling, especially since Clinica Sierra Vista has already integrated several aspects of the Act into their system.
“I’m not a big fan of the personal mandate, but I was glad to see the justices reframe it for what it is – a tax,” Hamilton said. “I’ll be curious to see how this plays out.”
The Lincoln Club of Fresno County said in a statement that the Act was a massive tax increase on middle and lower income Americans:
“Contrary to popular opinion, this is hardly a win for Obama and his leftist allies. They are now forced to explain their previously held position that they would not raise taxes on anyone making under $250,000 a year when they have clearly now done that.”
In a statement issued by his Washington, D.C. office, Rep. Jim Costa said the health reform was not a perfect bill, but the status quo was unacceptable, with rising costs and coverage becoming harder to obtain.
“I support Americans having access to the care they need when they need it,” Costa said. “That includes those with insurance and those struggling to obtain it.”
Attorney Daniel Jamison of Dowling Aaron, Inc. in Fresno said that he expected Justice Anthony Kennedy to be the swing vote after his statement during oral arguments in March when he voiced his concern over how the Act would change “the relationship of the federal government to the individual in a very fundamental way.” Chief Justice John Roberts ended up being the swing vote.
“It’s very peculiar,” Jamison said. “It is a major historical, broad and troublesome expansion of federal power.”
Jack Ahart of Ahart Benefit Insurance Services said that he wasn’t going to make a “knee-jerk reaction” because of the Court’s decision. He doesn’t see the decision as something that will affect his business too much.
“We’re a progressive agency, so we’re always adapting,” Ahart said. “The guys who have trouble are the ones who won’t be able to adapt.”