In Vermont, Court's Decision On Health Law Elicits Responses

06/29/12 11:21AM Meg Young

AP/David Goldman
Steve Ciccarelli of Annandale, Va., right, a proponent of President Barack Obama's health care law, argues with opponent on the issue, Susan Clark, of Washington, outside the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court's decision to uphold President Obama's health care bill has elicited plenty of responses from Vermonters.

Senator Patrick Leahy praised the ruling and said that the Affordable Care Act is a long awaited victory for all Americans. "These are good reforms, long needed by the American people, by American businesses and by the American economy," Leahy said.

Representative Peter Welch added that the Affordable Care Act will be a step towards creating a healthcare system that benefits small businesses and workers. "Working families need the peace of mind that comes with quality and affordable health care coverage," Welch said. "And businesses need to compete in a global economy without the heavy burden of skyrocketing premiums."

Daniel Barlow of Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility said that although the Supreme Court decision is certainly a boon for all Americans, process of health care reform in Vermont is far from complete. "Vermonters know full well that our work is not done here and VBSR looks forward to working with Governor Shumlin's administration to ensure that our state has a sustainable healthcare system."

Jeff Wennberg of Vermonters for Health Care Freedom called the decision a "mixed blessing for Governor Shumlin and single payer advocates." He cautioned that although the decision will allow Vermont to receive necessary federal funding for Green Mountain Care, the Vermont program may conflict with some portions of the Affordable Care Act and be rendered "beyond reach."

Republican gubernatorial hopeful Randy Brock unequivocally criticized the Supreme Court's decision and its implications for Vermont's health care reform plans. "[Thursday's] Supreme Court decision only postpones the day of reckoning for Governor Shumlin's Titanicare health care law. Titanicare is doomed to sink and take all of us with it. It's just going to sink a teeny bit slower with this subsidy," Brock said.

Shawn Shouldice, the Vermont State Director of the National Federation of Independent Businesses, also took the opportunity to condemn the Shumlin administration's health care program. "The ruling is especially disappointing to Vermont small businesses because it gives a green light to the controversial health care reform experiment to which the state is now committed," Shouldice said.

VIDEO: Gov. Shumlin reacts to the court's decision.


PDF: The Supreme Court's Health Care Ruling

SCOTUS Blog: Live blog of orders and opinions

NPR's News Blog: Health Care Ruling

NPR Special Series: Judging The Health Care Law



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