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Harkin Statement on 11th Circuit Court Ruling

WASHINGTON – Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) released the following statement on today’s ruling by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act: 

“The 11th Circuit is wrong in its assessment of the individual mandate.  At some point in their lives, all Americans will need health care.  If they seek that care without health insurance and don’t pay for it, they aren’t ‘opting out’ of the health care market.  Instead, their uncompensated care adds more than $1,000 per year to the premiums of American families who act responsibly by having coverage.  This clearly affects interstate commerce and is thus within Congress’ power to regulate.   

“Fortunately, the 11th Circuit’s will not be the final word on this issue – I am confident that the Supreme Court will find the Affordable Care Act constitutional, ensuring that Americans keep crucial new protections against the unfair practices of insurance companies.”