VALHALLA, N.Y. – Westchester residents had mixed reactions Thursday to the Supreme Court ruling to uphold President Barack Obama’s health care law, requiring all citizens to have health insurance.
“I’m very much in favor of this ruling,” said White Plains Rev. Bruce Greer, who was at the Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla Thursday to visit a patient in the intensive care unit. “Medical costs are some of the most expensive expenditures in this country and we have to hold people accountable for those costs.”
The United States Supreme Court ruling, which passed by a 5-to-4 vote Thursday morning, will require individuals to have health insurance at the risk of paying a fine. If not provided health insurance, citizens must pay for their insurance. Chief Justice John Roberts said the plan aims to cover the more than 30 million people who are currently uninsured in America, according to the Associated Press.
Lewisboro resident Elvin Molina said he was against the unified health care plan.
“If you’re forcing someone to pay into a health insurance plan I think that’s wrong,” Molina said, who was also at the Medical Center Thursday visiting a loved one.
Greer said he believes it is wrong for residents to be without health insurance benefits due to the high tab of health costs.
“If someone goes to the hospital or emergency room to receive treatment for a something and they don’t have health insurance,” Greer said, “that’s a major cost right there and someone needs to pay for it and that’s what we’re doing right now anyway.”
Greer added that he believes Republicans will rally around this decision not only for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, but on a smaller scale as well.
“I think the fans of small government will also look to elect Congressmen that will help in trying to overturn this,” Greer said.
Writing on the Bronxville Daily Voice's Facebook page, Jimmy Hill said: "In my opinion they got it wrong. Ronald Reagan said it was the government's duty to protect it citizens, not run their lives. He got it right!"
Joe Carvin, Rye Town Supervisor and the recently nominated Republican candidate for the 17th Congressional District election, called the Supreme Court decision a disappointment.
“Today's Supreme Court decision is deeply disappointing, but it serves to highlight two critical facts – Obamacare represents the largest tax increase in U.S. history and it must be struck down legislatively by the Congress rather than through the courts,” Carvin said.
Other residents support the decision. Carol Seischab, of Dobbs Ferry, said if she had to make the decision, she would have done the same thing but said there are flaws in the system.
“It’s nice that the government can take care of you, but at a certain point you need to take care of your own responsibilities,” Seischab said.
Seischab said the major flaw of the healthcare system comes down to money. Some people will struggle to provide coverage for themselves and their families, she said, but most of the people complaining about the costs are those who have wealth to spare.
“Insurance companies have to look in the mirror and ask what they can do to help those people who can’t afford care,” Seischab said.
Seischab, who has relatives living in Europe, said it’s strange that America is so hesitant to adopt widespread healthcare coverage because simply because they are afraid of socialism.