While Republicans and Democrats both tried to claim victory with the Supreme Court decision earlier this week on Arizona's immigration law, the reaction to Thursday’s ruling on the ACA (Affordable Care Act) was hardly the same.
President Barack Obama’s health care plan was largely upheld by the nation's highest court.
The vote was divided, with four of the more conservative members dissenting and Chief Justice John Roberts, appointed by George W. Bush, aligning himself with the more liberal justices.
Pundits and politicos began to voice their joy on the left and their disappointment on the right.
“What’s important to remember is that what the Court rules on is whether something is constitutional or not, not whether it’s a good idea," said Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican, in a statement.
"And while the Court has said that the law is constitutional, it remains a bad idea for our economy, and I hope that in the fall we will have a majority here that will not just repeal this law, but replace it with real solutions that will insure more people and cost a lot less money.”
Around the time the news broke about the decision, Rubio tweeted, “#SCOTUS upholds #Obamacare because it is a #taxincrease. I thought @barackobama said it wasnt a #tax?”
In a 2009 interview with ABC News, Obama rejected the notion that the mandate was a tax.
But what originally had been planned to be a penalty became in the decision a tax on those who can afford health insurance and do purchase it.
Republicans are ramping up their attack on the mandate, calling for reform and using the hash tag #FULLREPEAL in their Twitter battle against Obamacare.
The Republican National Committee, which is working with the campaign of expected Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, quickly released a video -- in both English and Spanish -- assailing the President's health care plan. In a press conference, Romney vowed to repeal it if elected President.
Conservative Latino group The Hispanic Leadership Network warned about negative consequences of the ruling for the Latino community.
"Today's Supreme Court ruling hurts Hispanics and all Americans especially hard during one of the worst economic times in our country," said Jennifer Korn, executive director of the Hispanic Leadership Network. "In its opinion, the Court shed light on the truth - that Obamacare is, in fact, a one trillion dollar tax-hike imposed on the American people."
Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval accepted the ruling, but in a statement said he hoped for reform by Congress.
“While I may not agree with the Supreme Court’s decision in this case," Sandoval, a Republican, said, "I respect the process envisioned by our founding fathers. The implications for Medicaid costs are still unclear, but Nevada will prepare to meet the serious financial implications of this decision."
“I believe the Congress should act to reform this law and ease the serious burdens it places on the states and the nation’s businesses. The American people remain deeply divided on the wisdom of this law and they are still entitled to see it changed.”
Supporters of the President's plan, including Congressman Xavier Becerra, a California Democrat, seemed ecstatic over what is expected to be deemed Obama’s biggest legislative victory.
“The #ACA is a ‘supremely’ constitutional law. In the words of @VP Joe Biden this is a big... deal,” tweeted Becerra, who referenced Vice President Biden’s open mic gaffe, minus the expletive, that voiced his excitement for the legislation.
The National Council of La Raza, a Latino civil rights advocacy group, was happy with the decision, tweeting: “The Supreme Court upholds health care reform: win for #LatinoHealth! Time to make the rest of law a reality.”
U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez said the ruling marked a victory over what he described as the greed of insurance companies.
“This decision is a victory for every American who has been waiting decades for a health care system that is about accessible, affordable health care and not about padding the bottom line of insurance companies,” said Menendez, New Jersey Democrat. “And I will oppose Republican efforts to repeal the consumer protections that would take us back to the days when insurance companies had free rein to do whatever they wanted.”
Congressman Luis Gutierrez, Illinois Democrat, called the ruling a win for equality.
“Today's ruling makes a definitive statement about how dearly we hold the values of equality and opportunity in the United States,” said Gutierrez.
“When I retire, I will be buying insurance from a health care exchange just like everyone else and I am proud to live in a country that allows working class families, blue collar workers and former Congressmen to share health care risks and health rewards and equal opportunity for life-saving coverage.”
Like many other business owners, some Latino employers view the ruling with concern.
"Business is already tasked with mandates and regulations from all levels of government -- state and federal," said Cindy Ramos-Davidson, head of the El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, which has 1,100 members, the majority of them small businesses. "They have to find a way to navigate through this new maze. They're already struggling just to stay alive and competitive. They are concerned about keeping employes, hiring new employe, giving raises and being able to expand their businesses."
Written by Victor Garcia. Follow him at @MrVicGarcia