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Supreme Court rejects latest attempt to repeal Obamacare

Millions of Americans have health coverage through the Affordable Care Act. The Supreme Court decided to leave the law intact, ruling against the 18 states that challenged it.

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In a 7-2 decision, the Supreme Court dismissed the latest challenge to the Affordable Care Act, keeping in place the health care law passed in 2010 under the Obama administration.

Thursday's decision held that Texas and the 17 other states and individual plaintiffs that challenged the ACA in November didn't have "standing" and failed to show "past or future injury" brought on by the ACA. 

The ACA makes it mandatory that everyone in the US have health insurance, but there's no longer a tax penalty if you don't. The removal of this penalty, the plaintiffs said, rendered the mandate unconstitutional and meant that the entire law should fall, as reported by The Texas Tribune. But some solicitors argued that because people no longer face any tax penalty for not getting coverage, the plaintiffs didn't have legal ground to challenge the law, CNN reported.

Justice Stephen Breyer delivered the court's opinion. Justices Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch dissented. Of the newest justices and Trump's three appointees to the court, Gorsuch was the only one to dissent. Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett joined the majority.

A report released earlier this month by the US Department of Health and Human Services found that 31 million Americans have health care coverage through the ACA. After the ACA's expansion of Medicaid eligibility to adults in December 2020, 14.8 million people enrolled in Medicaid, the HHS found.

If Thursday's decision had gone the opposite way, millions of Americans would've lost health care coverage. Additionally, insurance companies would no longer be required to provide preventative medicine services such as free birth control, and insurance companies could start denying coverage to people because of a preexisting condition. 

For a complete list of changes made to health care by the ACA and what's on the line, check out CNET's Affordable Care Act explainer

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.