"It's good for the people of Oregon, and good for the people who don't have health care... . It will slightly decrease the cost of health care and slow the escalation in the cost of premiums."
What was your reaction to the news that the U.S. Supreme Court
had upheld the Affordable Health Care Act?
In response to Thursday's Supreme Court decision, we asked local residents for their reaction. We spoke with two state legislators and asked others in downtown Medford, at the Rogue Valley Medical Center campus and in south Medford.
“It's good for the people of Oregon, and good for the people who don't have health care... . It will slightly decrease the cost of health care and slow the escalation in the cost of premiums.”
— Sen. Alan Bates, D-Medford
“I think what the court didn't do today, the voters will do in November... . It was kind of a surprise that (Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts) ruled the way he did. As a lawyer, I can understand the legal umbrella the court chose to reach its conclusion. These are not easy cases.”
— Rep. Dennis Richardson, R-Central Point
“It's an accomplishment to get something like this through an upper and lower house. It's a compromise, but it's better than nothing. It's certainly a step in the right direction. Single-payer is what we need.”
— Chris Stevens, 46, Medford
“To me it's socialism. As a country we keep taking on such high levels of debt at some point it's going to drag us down. I think we are going to go broke if we don't stop spending.”
— Debbie Ripley, 56, Medford
“Yay for George Bush for appointing Justice Roberts. The Supreme Court has done something good for this country. I have a pre-existing condition and could not get affordable coverage for years. The law is going to help.”
— Rebecca Dworkin, 63, Medford
“This is not the end. With the upcoming election their will be a change in the wind. Marco Rubio spoke for me when he said that just because the decision is constitutional, doesn't mean the policy is sound or good. You're going to have the IRS chasing you down to pick up the tax. We need an efficient system based on the free market.”
— Robert Olsson, 83, Rogue River
“I think it's a good idea. It helps a lot of people. I don't think that sickness should destroy someone's financial life.”
— Justine Cota, 16, Yreka, Calif.
“One of the problems with (the law) is that no one knows how it will affect people or businesses. I think there will be a lot of bugs to work out.”
— Enita Geiger, 42, Eagle Point
“It was the right thing to do. Now that it's over, I just want both sides to stop the negativity. I'm hoping things will get calmer.”
— Florence Seto, 81, Medford
“I think Medicare should stay the way it is without the law. I think people should be given health care based on their income.”
— Brent Russell Bowles, 44, Medford
“We seem to be the only first-world country that doesn't have a national health care policy. If this law helps us move toward that, it's a good thing. It doesn't make us socialist.”
— Jessica Lavell, 48, Central Point
“Today the Supreme Court gave help to the people of Oregon and the rest of the country ... . Decent health care for all is on it's way. Oregon has the model going forward because it's putting into place a system that can provide health care for all.”
— Rich Rohde, 77, Ashland