GOP presidential hopefuls ripped the Supreme Court on Thursday for upholding a key provision of ObamaCare, saying voters must put a Republican in the White House to kill the healthcare law once and for all.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee had the sharpest words for the Supreme Court, calling the King v. Burwell decision “an out-of-control act of judicial tyranny.”
“Our Founding Fathers didn't create a 'do-over' provision in our Constitution that allows unelected Supreme Court justices the power to circumvent Congress and rewrite bad laws,” Huckabee said. “The Supreme Court cannot legislate from the bench, ignore the Constitution and pass a multi-trillion dollar 'fix' to ObamaCare simply because Congress misread what the states would actually do.”
Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzOvernight Health Care — Presented by Carequest — Colin Powell's death highlights risks for immunocompromised The Senate confirmation process is broken — Senate Democrats can fix it Australian politician on Cruz, vaccines: 'We don't need your lectures, thanks mate' MORE (Texas) called the decision “judicial activism, plain and simple,” blasting the justices as “robed Houdinis" who "transmogrified a ‘federal exchange’ into an exchange ‘established by the State.' ” He said that any Republican running for president that isn’t fully committed to fully repealing the law “should step aside.”
“For nakedly political reasons, the Supreme Court willfully ignored the words that Congress wrote, and instead read into the law their preferred policy outcome,” Cruz said. “These judges have joined with President Obama in harming millions of Americans. Unelected judges have once again become legislators, and bad ones at that. They are lawless, and they hide their prevarication in legalese. Our government was designed to be one of laws, not of men, and this transparent distortion is disgraceful.”
"Today’s Supreme Court ruling upholding the administration’s implementation of ObamaCare means Republicans in the House and Senate must redouble their efforts to repeal and replace this destructive and costly law,” said Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a top-tier Republican candidate who is expected to officially join the race next month.
“Now, instead of just finger-pointing from the president for why his law is failing, we need real leadership in Washington, and Congress needs to repeal and replace ObamaCare,” Walker said.
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, meanwhile, vowed that the ruling doesn’t end the fight to kill the law.
"I am disappointed by today’s Supreme Court ruling in the King v. Burwell case. But this decision is not the end of the fight against Obamacare,” Bush said.
"As President of the United States, I would make fixing our broken healthcare system one of my top priorities,” he continued. “I will work with Congress to repeal and replace this flawed law with conservative reforms that empower consumers with more choices and control over their health care decisions … Americans deserve leadership that can actually fix our broken health care system, and they are certainly not getting it now from Washington, D.C.”
"This decision turns both the rule of law and common sense on its head,” said Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulVaccine 'resisters' are a real problem Democrats fret as longshot candidates pull money, attention Journalist Dave Levinthal discusses 'uptick' in congressional stock trade violations MORE (Ky.). “ObamaCare raises taxes, harms patients and doctors and is the wrong fix for America's health care system. As President, I would make it my mission to repeal it and propose real solutions for our healthcare system.”
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal sought to highlight that he’s the only Republican candidate that has put forth a detailed policy proposal to replace ObamaCare.
"Republicans must outline a clear and coherent vision for healthcare to win the trust of the American people to repeal ObamaCare,” he said. “And right now, I am the only candidate to put forward a comprehensive plan.
"Now that the Supreme Court has ruled, the debate will grow,” Jindal continued. “Conservatives must be fearless in demanding that our leaders in Washington repeal and replace ObamaCare with a plan that will lower health care costs and restore freedom."
"While I resent what the court has done, it only causes me to work even harder to make sure the next President will repeal and replace Obamacare with sensible consumer empowering solutions that remove the government from the patient/doctor relationship," retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson said. "Those of us who pledge to repeal Obamacare must redouble our efforts and not waste time and energy mourning today's ruling."
Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamPennsylvania Republican becomes latest COVID-19 breakthrough case in Congress McCain: Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner had 'no goddamn business' attending father's funeral Mayorkas tests positive for COVID-19 breakthrough case MORE (S.C.) said ObamaCare will be the top domestic issue in the 2016 election.
"If the public wants to continue ObamaCare, which I think would be a huge mistake, vote Democrat. If you want to repeal and replace ObamaCare with something better for you and your family, bipartisan, vote Republican," he said, adding that Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonSuper PACs release ad campaign hitting Vance over past comments on Trump I voted for Trump in 2020 — he proved to be the ultimate RINO in 2021 Neera Tanden tapped as White House staff secretary MORE, the likely Democratic presidential nominee "will make ObamaCare her own."
“Despite the Court’s decision, ObamaCare is still a bad law that is having a negative impact on our country and on millions of Americans,” said Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioSenate GOP campaign arm outraises Democratic counterpart in September House passes bills to secure telecommunications infrastructure Senators call for answers from US firm over reported use of forced Uyghur labor in China MORE (Fla.). “I remain committed to repealing this bad law and replacing it with my consumer-centered plan that puts patients and families back in control of their health care decisions. We need Consumer Care, not ObamaCare.”
Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry blasted the court’s decision, but said it was never the justices' responsibility to dismantle the law.
“It was never up to the Supreme Court to save us from ObamaCare,” Perry said. “We need leadership in the White House that recognizes the folly of having to pass a bill to know what’s in it. We need leadership that understands a heavy-handed, one-size-fits-all policy does nothing to help health outcomes for Americans.”
On Thursday, the justices in a 6-3 ruling affirmed that more than 6 million people in 34 states can continue to receive federal subsidies to purchase healthcare plans under the Affordable Care Act.
Had the justices ruled in favor of the conservative plaintiffs, many believe the state healthcare markets would have been sent into a death spiral.
Conservative Chief Justice John Roberts said in his majority opinion that this couldn’t have been the intent of Congress when it wrote the law.
The King v. Burwell decision was the biggest legal threat to the law since the Supreme Court’s ruling three years ago that it was constitutional.
--This report was updated at 1:17 p.m.