What Supreme Court’s latest ruling means for people on Obamacare

The court also handed a victory to a Catholic foster care agency accused of discriminating against same-sex couples.
7:51 | 06/17/21

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Transcript for What Supreme Court’s latest ruling means for people on Obamacare
Supreme Court today upholding the Affordable Care Act also known as obamacare. For the third time the third major challenge to this law. That is currently giving a record 31 million people access to health care including my brother and sister. So another 54 million Americans with pre existing conditions also benefit from the law's protections. Today's seven to three decision by the court sidestepped a major issue whether obamacare can stand without that provision that required most Americans to obtain insurance or pay a penalty. They ducked that question instead this decision was based. And the concept of standing. I do you have the right just who had he truly been injured. By the law a majority of justices said that the Republican plaintiffs. Had suffer had not suffered this sort of direct injury that would allow them to seuss or joining us don't break this down ABC's Devin Dwyer. DeVon you've been watching this case from the beginning many Republicans thought the when president trump appointed. Justice any coding parrot to the court that would mean for sure she's so conservative the end of obamacare she was in fact though. One of the justices who voted to uphold the law in today's decision what more can you tell us about how the justices came down. Catcher was carried the confirmation hearings which are covered extensively for Amy coney Barrett fixated. On obamacare she Woodson has been very hostile to it of course president trump. Nominated that conservative justice to the bridge with the expressed purpose. Of helping to root out obamacare and yet here we are today she was one of four of the conservative justices including. Chief Justice John Roberts for Kavanagh Clarence Thomas. I'm that sided with the liberals in an opinion written by justice Stephen Breyer the most senior liberal on the bench. I to once again to hurdle weigh one of these challenges X essential challenges. To obamacare as you mentioned at the top of this case it this decision really didn't even get to the merits of the argument on whether or not the individual mandate. Is constitutional whether it should be severed when the rest of the law should stand actually stopped well short of that. On this issue of standing do the people bringing the challenge to obamacare even have. A reason to be in court. And that's seven member majority seven justice majority said today Terry as you know. They said no you don't have standing you weren't even injured the individual mandate doesn't have a penalty right now it's simply command to have insurance therefore. It's a hard case to make that you should even being he be here claiming some sort of injury before this court. And therefore they simply turned it away and the individual mandate stands the rest of the law stands this was a very much and status quo decision for the health care system. And forty ACA. But as you point out DeVon what a remarkable lineup of justices for conservatives including justice Barrett. Joining. The liberals to uphold is that third major case that Obama care survive before the court the perils of Pauline here so what now. You think Republicans and keep fighting this in court. Well I think we'll still see some legal skirmishes around portions of the law but did leave the consensus today from what I've been hearing. Up from legal analysts and health care policy experts Terry is that. This is it for the existential challenges to the law that is the Affordable Care Act is here to stay it's not going anywhere in fact. As one put it today it's on a stronger footing as it's ever had in its over ten years in existence a record 31 million people in this country. Get coverage through the lot even without the mandate in place they are still. Proving that this law can stand can be effective. About provisions of it are still under fire from conservatives. We are hearing now just in these hours after the decision that. Odd number of cases are still going to proceed in federal court there's one coming up out of Texas teary. I that's taking aim at some of the requirements for free no cost preventive care vaccines contraception coverage all those sorts of things. Could face a new challenge to that will go on but the bulk of the law is here this day. A remarkable turn so what's been the reaction coming in from Republicans and from president Biden. He should remember Terry that you were there resident Biden by a President Obama are vice president Vice President Biden at president Obama's side you know whispered. To his boss at the time this was signed that this is a big Epstein deal. And today from the White House they're declaring using that same slogan to describe this opinion is a big FE DO this takes huge pressure. There you see our Ron Claiborne has cheaper chief of staff Colin and a BF eight. It edit this takes a lot of pressure off this White House they didn't want to have to be dealing with the decision that dismantled the entire law part of why we're in the middle of a pandemic after all so huge relief. For the White House today the Republicans I think are also tacitly conceding Terry that this is this fight is over as well though we have heard from Roy Blunt. Senator of Missouri in the leadership he said day it's pretty hard to unravel this thing now John Barrasso of Wyoming said it's going to stagger on. In its failed state although that set up for dispute. So Republicans at this point are gonna talk a lot about fixing the law. But there's probably pretty little they can do to eliminate the entire thing. And Republicans and president trump promised four years that their health care plan was coming out it was going to be on the table in a matter weeks or months or whatever never came. They may actually turned it fixing it. In legislation the way they'd like another major case decide today the justices decided their first major case and religious liberty. And nondiscrimination. Against LG PP families. The case involved a Foster care in city Philadelphia weather Catholic social services agency give it can be denied a contract. Because of its refusal to work with same sex couples in. In the Foster care system placing children with same sex couples the Catholics didn't want to do that when the court land on its. The fascinating decision Terry because this one. I you would think they pitched the religious liberty people against LG BT rights advocates he may think getting ahead with the decision when a broken along ideological lines. In fact it was unanimous today the unanimous Supreme Court sided with Catholic social services. But in a very narrow ruling focused seem really on the city of Philadelphia's policy. And the basis for excluding Catholic social services from the Foster system after really. Couple hundred years. Working in that city this is Philadelphia had argued that their exclusion of gay and lesbian couples. From the process was discriminatory the Catholics are church of course said it's a matter of faith in the justices said you know what actually in the policy in the city of Philadelphia. They had written in there they're dead the commissioner. For health and human services in Philadelphia could grant exemptions. Are to certain organizations and it's a you know what the fact the justices said that the fact that that is in there. In their policy suggests that it is not a generally applied rule it's not a neutral rule if you're gonna be given out exemptions. Here in there and therefore it doesn't pass Muster and it was struck down C unanimously here. The court deciding that the Catholics. Just got off in interview with the deputy mayor of the city of Philadelphia she says the city is now gonna decide how to go forward to they've revised their policy. And an attempt to continue blocking Catholic social services from this or do they welcome them back the city has had a long history in a good relationship. With Catholic social services they need those families they need to church involved I do they find some way to thread the needle that remains to be seen. Eight meanwhile gay rights advocates terrier sort of breathing and sat relief should they said this is that it. The best worst outcome they could've imagined in this case. And in this case the justices unanimously the other one that interesting lineup of liberals joining conservatives. What's gone on up there I know you'll be that Telesis as we go forward Devin Dwyer thanks very much thanks Terry.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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