Submitted by ub on Thu, 06/28/2012 - 12:27

The US Supreme Court has ruled on the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare. The following comments were made by our US Congressional Representative. Joe Crowley is the seven-term representative from the 7th Congressional District of New York, which includes City Island. He is a member of the powerful Ways and Means Committee and serves as a Chief Deputy Whip in the House of Representatives. Crowley says...

“Over two years ago, President Obama and Democrats in Congress took on the longstanding challenge of improving our nation’s health care system. We worked to put an end to runaway premium increases and arbitrary coverage denials, to improve and strengthen Medicare, and to create options for individuals and small businesses to purchase quality and affordable insurance. I am pleased that today, our hard work was validated.

“I also hope a new bipartisan spirit emerges after today. Instead of wasting energies on pursuing a repeal of health reform, I hope my colleagues on the other side of the aisle will start working with Democrats to implement this law in the best way possible and return our attentions to the pressing issues of the day – creating jobs and strengthening the economy.”

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz called the Supreme Court decision, “ a major victory for the American people by upholding the ‘individual mandate’ of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.' Diaz went on to say “This is an important law that affects millions of residents across the country. In a Borough where a high percentage of residents are uninsured, it is imperative for this law to remain so that Bronxites can access and afford the care they need. According to the Bronx Health Link, had the bill been upheld in its entirety about 99,000 Bronx residents would have gained insurance coverage, and the uninsured rate would have gone down from 21% in 2009 to 14%. Moreover, up to 70,000 more New York State residents would have been eligible for Medicaid starting in 2014.

“It is because of this law we have made a fundamental and transformative change to how those with preexisting conditions will receive the care they so desperately need. It is because of this law we have taken a substantial step in fixing a broken system.

“But there is more work to be done. By striking down the Medicaid expansion provision, we have missed a tremendous opportunity to impact those areas with the greatest economic need. We must continue to push Congress to make the needed reforms to Medicaid so that more Americans can receive benefits under this important program.

“We thank the President for his leadership. Residents in our Borough and those across the country will have greater rights and protections when it comes to healthcare. Today is a victory for all Americans,” according to The Bronx Borough President.