At 12:15 today, President Barack Obama took to the stage to address the citizens of the U.S., regarding the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold his controversial health care reform package, known as the Affordable Care Act, or, at first derisively, as Obamacare. The President both explained the act–and reminded the people of America that this is about people, not policy.
“I know there will be a lot of discussion of politics today. Of who won and who lost. But that…misses the point,” Obama said, noting that, rather than focusing on whether or not the package is good politically, it’s time to focus on helping those who are sick and in need.
“First, if you’re one of the 250 million Americans who already have health insurance, you will keep your health insurance. This company will only make it more secure and more affordable.”
Obama was also quick to point out that there are many provisions in the act which Americans, both young and old, have already been using.
“Because of the Affordable Care Act, young Americans are allowed to stay on their parents health care…Because of the Affordable Care Act, seniors receive a discount on their prescription drugs. All of this is happening because of the Affordable Care Act,” he stated.
And for those who are completely uninsured, Obama explained, states will be able to come up with their own menu of services, which the uninsured will be able to buy into at marketplaces where consumers can compare companies, and make informed decisions. This will also, Obama said, make insurance companies more competitive. For those who can’t afford premiums, there will be a credit to help make it affordable.
Obama also explained that the law will help fix the health insurance companies’ poor policies, like charging women more, and not covering basic health care like mammograms.
The decision hinged on the constitutionality of the individual mandate, which would require all Americans to purchase some form of health care. Because the mandate was upheld (as a tax), the rest of Obamacare, which challenger Mitt Romney called “bad policy” and blamed for killing American jobs, was allowed to stand, unquestioned.