With so many names vying for the Fourth Congressional District seat, there is likely to be a variety of candidate opinions when it comes to the U.S. Supreme Court's health care ruling yesterday.
On June 28, the court decided 5-4 to uphold the mandate for individuals to purchase health insurance, the most controversial component of the Affordable Care Act.
We heard what Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren and U.S. Sen. Scott Brown had to say,but what about the Massachusetts politicos running for Barney Frank's seat?
Here are statements from some of the Fourth District candidates:
Brookline resident and Democrat Joe Kennedy III called the decision "a victory for this country", noting in his statement that his uncle (Sen. Ted Kennedy), spent his political career fighting for health care.
"Today’s decision is a victory for this country – for our seniors who won't have to make the tragic choice between food and medicine, for people with pre-existing conditions who won't get turned away by insurance companies, and for young adults who won't get thrown off their parents' policies," Kennedy said in the statement. "The decision allows us to build on the remarkable progress we have made so far and brings us closer to what my uncle spent his career fighting for -- the idea that health care is not just a basic need, but also a basic right."
Fellow Democrat and Newton resident Herb Robinson also applauded the Supreme Court's decision, saying in an e-mailed statement that Massachusetts is "leading the way" in health care.
"I am grateful Justice Roberts came to his senses," Robinson said in the statement. "In talking with voters in Massachusetts, I haven't encountered very many voters who want to do away with the health care bill. Most of the dissatisfaction I have encountered has actually been from single payer proponents, not people who wanted repeal. Massachusetts is clearly leading the way here. It's time the rest of the country started to do what we were put on this planet to do: Take care of each other."
LaRouche Democrat Rachel Brown, though, disagreed with those in her party, arguing that the Affordable Care Act is "another tax on poor people" that will not go over well for the Obama administration.
"The change brought about by Obamacare will actually make things worse, restricting care for the majority, while adding a tax on those unable to afford insurance. In addition, the Massachusetts health care policy is proving that such a law is too costly on the state level, when done through private insurance, so besides being wrong, the bill simply doesn't work," Brown said in an emailed statement.
Former Barney Frank challenger and Republican Sean Bielat, who is opening a new campaign office in Newton next month, expressed his disappointment in the Supreme Court's ruling. Bielat argued in a statement issued yesterday that the bill "has already caused significant damage to the health care system" and is limiting job growth for Americans.
“I am very disappointed in the Court’s ruling,” Bielat said in the statement. “However, I am not discouraged. It’s critical we repeal ObamaCare and work toward real healthcare reform that does not cripple the nation’s economy, but rather supports job growth, competition and innovation.”
“The White House chose to limit job growth and medical advancement exactly when our country needs it most,” Bielat added. “Those are two pillars of American prominence. I will fight for reform that boosts our economy, puts people to work, increases research and improves the quality of care. The President chose to ignore these goals.”
Brookline Republican and physician Elizabeth Childs also showed determination to keep the health care conversation going. In a statement issued yesterday, Childs argued that the current bill is not the solution and that the Affordable Care Act should be repealed and replaced with state-by-state and free market solutions.
"Today's Supreme Court decision should not mark the end of the health care reform discussion. While the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has noble intentions, it does not do nearly enough to address the underlying health care cost-drivers and will increase the deficit. We still need to work together to create a workable, bipartisan health care solution for all Americans.
As a physician and the former Massachusetts Commissioner of Mental Health, I have been on the front lines of the health care delivery system for more than 30 years. I have helped families suffering without adequate health care coverage but also have seen waste and lack of cost controls throughout the system. The next evolution of health care reform needs to address both the estimated 50 million uninsured or underinsured Americans while also controlling skyrocketing health care costs," Childs said in a statement.
Similar to his fellow Republicans, Fall River dentist David Steinhof disagreed with the Supreme Court's decision on the Affordable Care Act. Steinhof, though, argued that the ruling is another step "toward turning this country into a socialist state." In a statement issued yesterday, Steinhof argued that the government continues to grow and is at the point where it is "too large and too powerful."
“Today’s ruling is not the first step toward turning this country into a socialist state. But it is the most recent and most egregious. For our President and Supreme Court to ignore the meaning behind our Constitution and conspire to make Obamacare Constitutional law of the land demonstrates that in their minds, we the people are no longer in control of our country," Steinhof said in the statement.
"The only silver lining to this very dark shroud is that my faith in the American people and our belief in liberty will throw President Obama out of office in November and elect conservative lawmakers to repeal this dreadfully harmful law," Steinhof added.