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The U.S. Supreme Court rejected Thursday a Republican-led attempt backed by former President Donald Trump's administration to scrap Obamacare, in turn maintaining the healthcare law for the third time since it passed in 2010.
The 7-2 Supreme Court ruling stated that Texas and other plaintiffs had no legal standing to file their lawsuit seeking to invalidate the law, previously called the Affordable Care Act, which has led millions of Americans to obtain healthcare coverage through public programs or private insurers. The decision was authored by Justice Stephen Breyer.
The justices did not comment on broader legal questions raised in the case about whether certain Obamacare provisions were unconstitutional or not. They also did not comment on whether the rest of the statute should be struck down. The main provision in question, the so-called "individual mandate," initially required Americans to secure health insurance or pay a financial penalty.
Democratic President Joe Biden, whose administration was against the suit, said, "Today's U.S. Supreme Court decision is a major victory for all Americans benefiting from this groundbreaking and life-changing law."
Biden added, "It is time to move forward and keeping building on this landmark law," not that three major challenges to Obamacare have been settled by the justices. Biden also encouraged more people to use Obamacare to get coverage.
Public opinion polls show that Obamacare is now increasing popular among Americans, including Republicans.
The Republican who led the challenge, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, said on Twitter that the individual mandate "was unconstitutional when it was enacted and it is still unconstitutional," vowing to continue to fight Obamacare.
BREAKING: The Supreme Court rejects the constitutional challenge to Obamacare in 7-2 opinion. The court tosses the lawsuit because the challengers do not have legal standing to sue. https://t.co/meuQgPE50Z
The legislation was the main domestic policy victory of former President Barack Obama, under whom Biden served as vice president.
Of the decision, Obama said: "This ruling reaffirms what we have long known to be true: the Affordable Care Act is here to stay."
In his statements, Breyed declared that none of the challengers, including Texas and 17 other states, as well as the individual plaintiffs, could trace any legal injury back to the individual mandate, mostly because a Republican-backed tax law inaugurated by Trump in 2017 had eliminated the financial penalty.
Breyer stated: "Unsurprisingly, the states have not demonstrated that an unenforceable mandate will cause their residents to enroll in valuable benefits programs that they would otherwise forgo."