WASHINGTON: The US Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a bid by Republican-led states to overturn Obamacare, safeguarding the health insurance of millions with the coronavirus pandemic still a threat in much of America.
In a 7-2 decision, the nation's highest court upheld the Affordable Care Act (ACA), former president Barack Obama's signature health care program, ruling that Texas and the other 17 states did not have standing in the case.
President Joe Biden, who was Obama's vice president when the ACA was enacted, called the court ruling "a big win for the American people."
"With millions of people relying on the Affordable Care Act for coverage, it remains, as ever, a BFD," Biden said. "And it's here to stay."
"BFD" is a reference to a comment Biden whispered into Obama's ear at the 2010 ACA signing ceremony, when he said: "This is a big fucking deal." Biden's remark was picked up by live microphones.
The White House said this month that more than 31 million Americans currently receive their health care through Obamacare, which Republicans have unsuccessfully attempted to have thrown out in Congress and in the courts on numerous previous occasions.
Other Democratic lawmakers welcomed the court decision.
"Thanks to the tireless advocacy of Americans across the country and the work of Democrats in Congress, the Affordable Care Act endures," said Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic speaker of the House of Representatives. "Despite every desperate right-wing attack to rip health care away from millions of Americans, the Affordable Care Act is constitutional and it's here to stay," said Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. "Now let's get to work to improve it so every American can get the care they need."