WASHINGTON (WSAZ & AP) -- The Supreme Court has released their decision on President Obama's health care plan.
According to NBC and The Associated Press, in a five to four decision the Supreme Court has upheld the President's health care plan -- including the individual mandate.
The decision means the historic overhaul will continue to take effect over the next several years, affecting the way countless Americans receive and pay for their personal medical care.
In the language of the decision, the individual mandate was changed from a penalty to a tax. So, Americans cannot be forced to buy insurance -- but you will be taxed if you don't have coverage.
Chief Justice John Roberts has joined with the court's four liberal justices in upholding the heart of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. Even though the justices rejected two of the administration's arguments in support of the individual mandate, it upheld it as a tax. The four dissenting justices said the law "exceeds federal power" in mandating the purchase of health insurance and in the Medicaid expansion.
The court found problems with the law's expansion of Medicaid. But even there, it said the expansion could proceed as long as the federal government does not threaten to withhold the entire Medicaid allotment to states if they don't take part in the extension.
The court's four liberal justices, Stephen Bryer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, joined Roberts in the outcome.
WSAZ.com is working to get the entire decision linked to this story -- and a better break down of the entire ruling.
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