Following are responses from Texas lawmakers in response to Supreme Court’s decision on the Affordable Health Care Act:
Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Republican
"This ruling will be a stomach punch to the American economy. It is a shocking disappointment to freedom-loving Americans desperate to get our country back on track."
U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX)
“The Supreme Court has declared the health care law constitutional, but that doesn’t make it good policy. In fact, the majority said it was not ruling on fairness or wisdom of health care policy, but instead on the power of Congress to levy taxes. The court’s ruling confirms the president’s health care law is nothing more than a massive tax on the American people. When the health care law is fully implemented, most Americans won’t be able to keep the coverage they have now. Their health insurance coverage choices will be decided in Washington, D.C., and there will also be new regulations to disrupt the doctor-patient relationship."
U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX)
“The Supreme Court made clear today that the American people will be the ultimate judge of ObamaCare. As Republicans, we will redouble our efforts to repeal this job-killing law. We must replace it with reforms that expand access and enhance care without adding trillions of dollars to the national debt and inserting Washington bureaucrats between Americans and their doctors. While I am disappointed in the outcome, there will be plenty of time to debate the Court’s decision; now we must focus on electing Republicans in November who will end ObamaCare and put Americans back to work.”
Texas Lt. Governor Dewhurst, Republican
“Today’s decision by the Supreme Court to uphold Obamacare as constitutional is reason number one why we need a Republican majority in the U.S. Senate to repeal this monstrous law. As I have said from the start of my campaign, my top priority on Day One in Washington will be to file legislation to repeal every word of Obamacare and throw the law in the trash can. Whether the individual mandate is characterized by the court as a mandate, or a tax, it is most certainly a disaster for America. The Nancy Pelosi Congress and President Obama lied to the American people, denying that this disastrous mandate was a tax. Washington, D.C. insiders have been misleading Americans far too long, and it's time to clean house. Obamacare has been a disaster since it was passed - increasing America’s tax burden to cover the out of control costs."
Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, Republican
"This is an historic victory for individual liberty, states’ rights, and limited government. Today the Supreme Court made crystal clear that the federal government is more restrained than yesterday and yet, through a novel application of the facts, the Court did what Congress was afraid to do--called ObamaCare a tax on all Americans. This is particularly ironic since President Obama, himself, insisted this was not a tax. The decision marks a turning point in constitutional history. The Supreme Court rebuked a runaway federal government that tried to hijack the Constitution by imposing an unprecedented requirement forcing Americans to buy a product against their will. In doing so, the Court dismantled the centerpiece of ObamaCare—the federal government’s authority to compel Americans to purchase a product."
Texas House Speaker Joe Straus, R-San Antonio.
"The Texas House will do its part during the next session by attempting to limit any negative impact the law might have on our state."
Rep. Lloyd Doggett (TX-10), Democrat
"This is a significant victory for every family and small business denied insurance or overcharged or mistreated by an insurer. And it is a victory for seniors who gain better Medicare coverage. Now we must continue our struggle to overcome the naysayers and obstructionists to assure each family has access to a family doctor.”
Rep. Lamar Smith (TX-21), Republican
"While millions of Americans are disappointed by today’s decision, Congress will not be deterred in our commitment to repeal Obamacare. The individual mandate may have been found to be constitutional as a tax, but that doesn’t make it good policy for the American people. The President’s promises about Obamacare have proved hollow. Obamacare costs our economy trillions of dollars, imposes new and burdensome taxes on the American people, and drives up costs for employers. ... Today’s decision not only upholds bad policy, it sets a dangerous precedent about the power of the federal government. Never before in our nation’s history has the federal government required people to purchase a good or service simply because they live in the U.S. – until now."
Texas Sen. Carlos Uresti (Dist. 19), Democrat
"The Supreme Court ruling is great news for working Americans who have struggled to provide health care for their families. By laying the constitutionality question to rest, the high court has cleared the way for this historic law to be fully implemented. It is a great day for the rule of law and the future of health care in America."
Texas Sen. Leticia Van de Putte (Dist. 26), Democrat
"I'm extremely pleased that the Affordable Care Act, which has already benefited so many Texans, will continue to bring care to people who otherwise would not have health insurance," said Sen. Van de Putte. "Today, 32 million have the promise of healthcare, including 9 million Latinos and 6 million Texans. As a pharmacist, I swear an oath that reads, I will consider the welfare of humanity and relief of human suffering my primary concerns. I am so proud that President Obama and the federal government will do so as well.As a health care professional, I'm glad that the government will finally address the fact that one in every four Texans is uninsured, the highest rate in the nation. Now people who lose their jobs through no fault of their own won't have to fear losing their health insurance. Hardworking Americans will not be forced into bankruptcy due to medical catastrophe. And every American family will have the reality of a family doctor at an affordable cost. As a legislator, I'm know that more people will have access to preventative health care, and that taxpayers will be paying for fewer expensive emergency room visits."
Rep. Francisco “Quico” Canseco (TX-23), Republican
“Today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court is disappointing for American families, seniors, and small businesses who were looking to the Supreme Court for relief from the burdens of Obamcare’s government takeover of health care. However, we can still ensure that this burden is lifted off of the American people and small businesses by repealing Obamacare. If we do not repeal it, Obamacare will leave Americans with more expensive and lower quality health care, ensure that Washington – instead of patients and doctors – is firmly in charge of our health care, leave American seniors’ access to health care threatened because of the over half a trillion dollars in cuts to Medicare to pay for Obamacare in the law, and ensure that Obamacare remains a burden upon our economy and small businesses by allowing all of the taxes, mandates, and other regulatory burdens to move forward. The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling merely affirmed the constitutionality of Obamacare, not that it’s good for the health care of Americans or our economy. It’s now up to the people’s elected representatives in the United States Congress to carry out the will of the American people and repeal Obamacare in its entirety.”
Rep. Charles Gonzalez (TX-20), Democrat
“The Supreme Court’s decision is a victory for all Americans, including the 16 million uninsured Hispanics. Access to healthcare has been a longstanding concern to the Hispanic community, as Latinos are far less likely to get preventive services but have a greater chance than whites of being diagnosed with diseases like diabetes. ... With the decision, America moves closer to lightening the burden on working families and ensuring that all our citizens will have a brighter future. Now, it is time for my Republican colleagues to stop playing partisan politics with Americans’ well-being. Their obstructionist arguments lost in Congress and lost in our country’s highest court, so hopefully Republicans will end their insistence that important policy goals cannot or should not be accomplished."