tv The Last Word MSNBC June 29, 2012 1:00am-2:00am EDT
>> i have been explaining to them the individual mandate is indeed a tax. >> this was the centerpiece. >> chief justice john roberts -- >> siding with the liberal voices on the court. >> the democrats thought they were going to lose. the republicans thought they were going to win. >> i think roberts found the answer. >> the affordable care act is no longer a question, but indeed quite possibly the answer. >> it was a shock only to the poor underinformed souls that the supreme court found the constitutional justification relies exclusively in congress' ability to tax. the justices didn't use that politically poisoned word tax.p
>> the supreme court also upheld the principle that people who can afford health insurance should take the responsibility to buy health insurance. this is important for two reasons. first, when uninsured people who can afford coverage get sick and show up the at the emergency room for care, the rest of us end up paying for their care inç the form of higher premiums. and second, if you ask insurance companies to cover people with pre-existing conditions but don't require people who can afford it to buy their own insurance, some folks might wait until they're sick to buy the care they're need, which would also drive up everybody else's premiums. >> during the supreme court hear on the case, the most vocal and emotional opponent of the individual mandate was sure, he was just sure that his broccoli example would carry the day. >> could you define the market? everybody has to buy food? sooner or later you define the market as food.
therefore everybody is in the market, therefore you can make everybody buy broccoli. >> and as it happened, justice scalia's broccoli argument actually did convince a majority of the supreme court that the individual mandate is unconstitutional under the commerce clause, which the obama administration cited as justification for it. but the commerce clause wasn't the only justification. the obama administration was hoping to win the case on the commerce clause instead of the more politically uncomfortable power to tax. the only part of the affordable act that the supreme court struck down was the provision that requires all states to expand medicaid coverage substantially. that medicaid coverage is now optional for the states, which means millions of people who are going to receive that expanded ç coverage under medicaid will now receive nothing.
we will have more on the policy discussion on exactly what the supreme court did today later. and those policy implications are much bigger than anyone still seems to realize. there were many surprises in the supreme court opinion, cliending the ruling again the medicaid provision which always seemed to be more on a solid constitutional ground than the individual mandate. much has been made of the surprise chief justice roberts siding with the president on the individual mandate, but at least as surprising, if not more so was the defection of the president's former lawyer, the former obama administration solicitor general elena kagan against the president as did justice breyer.
who won and who lost? joining me now is the host of nbc's now alex wagner, richard wolffe, the author of "renegade -- making of a president." julian, the ruling was striking today in so many ways, obviously using the power to tax to sustain the mandate.ç but yes, justice scalia's broccoli example is accepted by the chief justices and a majority of the court as knocking out the individual mandate under the commerce clause. it seems that this opinion is trying to write a very strict limitation on any future expansions of the commerce clause. >> that is the conventional wisdom as people read it.
but as you and i and so many people got wrong the arizona immigration ruling, they're drawing the distinction between activity and inactivity. if you didn't want to buy health insurance, the federal government couldn't make you. that was the decision on which they said it didn't affect interstate commerce. i think that impact is going to be minimal to nil. because i can't for a minute think of another example in which this activity-inactivity distinction would be made. if you read the roberts' opinion, roberts chipped away at the edges of the commerce clause, but basically kept in place the jurisprudence for the last 50 years. i think what they did is much, much more minimal impact.
as you pointed out two nights ago on the tax element, what was so surprising about what roberts said in the decision today was it was kind of obvious. everyone thought it was kind of out of left field.ç we have tax incentives for a whole variety of things. whether to go to school, to have a child, get married, buy a home. this is no different than the tax incentives we have throughout the tax code. he kind of said this was a no-brainer. the idea that this came out of left field, i think roberts in his majority opinion kind of debunked that. and very much to the point you made the other night. >> alex, it turns out that the chief justice also went on to give an example of legislation the democrats haven't tried yet which was if you wanted to provide a tax break for homeowners who made their windows more energy efficient, that would be constitutional. he went to great lengths just to show how solid that tax grounding is. but still, the president and the democrats don't want to rely on
that word just because it has difficult political implications for them. >> yes. i don't think democrats are going to be touting the idea of a new tax. >> and by the way, it's a tiny tax. it's like, you know, $90. >> exactly. and it turns out you don't even have to pate because there's no penalty provision. >> the great thing about the supreme court case for the obama administration is they have done virtually no job -- they have not sold it to the american public at all. the veil of secrecy over the 2,700 page document is beginning to lift. and of course, these provisions are going to take place. it's not just children who can stay -- or youths who can stay on their parents' insurance plan until they're 26. we're talking about major, majoç changes in american society as far as health care. people are not going to be denied coverage because they have pre-existing conditions. i am of the mind that states are
going to opt into that program. that will opt an additional 17 million people on the brink of poverty. families of four making $29,000 a year. they are going to have access to health care. this is a game-changer for american society. >> richard wolffe, with your book, you've taken us inside obama decision making up close, including this difficult decision he had on how he was going to vote on the confirmation chief justice roberts. and as you write, it's very clear that he would like to live in a political world where he actually could have voted for a learned legal scholar like this. but the political practical side of it came down on him and he realized that the rulings that the chief might do over the years would be things that he might regret. but apparently, this is not one of them. >> it's ironic. he wanted to vote, as a new senator, he wanted to vote for
-- actually, this was when john roberts was just nominated for the supreme court. before he was elevated to chief justice. and he was convinced otherwise, the new senator, senator obama was convinced otherwise by someone as frankly mainstream and nonfire brand like as pete rouse, his senior adviser, on the basis that he would be held accountable for everything john roberts did over the next 20 years. the base, democrats would hate him for it, and obama respondedç with well, look, maybe if i each president, i would want my nominees accepted if they were technically competent and that would be okay. and rouse said look, in 20 years time, no one is going to remember what you did, much less give you credit for it. roberts set aside that he did not vote for him and ruled on the la uh. >> it reminded me of virtually identical conversations i had while working in the senate with democratic senators about the difficult question of voting on supreme court confirmations and
what they should base it on. julian, what do you make of the politics of this going forward for the president? it seems to everyone, i think there's one area of agreement. today was a political win day for president obama and his re-election campaign. >> well, first and foremost, it was a win for the american people, the tens of millions who don't have insurance. it was a win for the legitimacy of the supreme court. it was unquestionably a win for president obama. it shows him as a leader when mitt romney is dodging questions about immigration, can't articulate an economic policy. this shows a guy who's act action and getting stuff done. secondly, you know, there -- it's going to be very, very difficult now for the republicans to actually try to repeal this. there are many provisions of this the republicans actually like now. thingslike pre-existing conditions. benefits for seniors, benefits for the middle class, benefits for children on their parents health insurance systems. so it's going to be very, very difficult now for the republicans to take something
away that's going to become increasingly popular.ç third, mitt romney is on record at least half a dozen time, talking about the benefits of using tax penalties to go after the free riders, exactly the provision the supreme court validated today. it seems very hard for to see how mitt romney is going to ke this a centerpiece of his campaign. and look, this has got to be a job of this presidency -- the going after eric holder while important work is getting done by the democrats on health care and important work is being done on jobs. i think the contrast between the president and the opposing party are starting to sharpen. i think this is going to be a very, very important arrow in his quiver. >> romney doesn't seem to be on the same page as the house republicans. they just want to repeal. romney is still doing that repeal and replace song. and they don't want any talk about replace. >> what are they going to
replace it? david fromm said this is the republicans' water loo. they're proposing to replace a 2,700 document with a one-page document in a bid to show transparency. the idea that there's any stomach to renegotiate this battle is a gross miscalculation. and inspector clousseau congress is a wide exaggeration at this point. >> coming up, house whip steny hoyer.ç and michael moore will get the last word tonight. and we'll look beyond the individual mandate to what the supreme court actually changed in the health care law and how thanks to the supreme court the affordable health care act will now provide much less care for
millions of people. ah, claim trouble. [ voice of dennis ] you should just switch to allstate, and get their new claim satisfaction guarantee. hey, he's right, man. [ voice of dennis ] only allstate puts their money where their mouth is. yep. [ voice of dennis ] claim service so good, it's guaranteed. [ normal voice ] so i can always count on them. unlike randy over there. that is one dumb dude. ♪ the new claim satisfaction guarantee, only from allstate. are you in good hands? if you made a list of countries from around the world... the new claim satisfaction guarantee, only from allstate. ...with the best math scores. ...the united states would be on that list. in 25th place. let's raise academic standards across the nation. let's get back to the head of the class. let's solve this.
today, the president talked about a woman with health care problem ins colluding cancer and leukemia who sent him a letter that he carried in his pocket every day he was fighting to paz the affordable care act. that woman will join me later. and in ek next, steny hoyer will join me to discuss the health care act and holding eric holder in contempt. and the man who showed what's wrong with the american health care system in his documentary, "sicko." michael moore will get the last word tonight. oh, and bill o'reilly once promised he would call himself an idiot if the individual mandate was ruled unconstitutional.ç and so tonight, the brave bill o'reilly let someone else host his show.
[ morgan ] right now when you use your visa card, you're entered for a chance to win a trip to the olympic games for life. to cheer the summer athletes to new heights, starting in 2016... as you experience every moment, every emotion, every four years... for the rest of your life. visa. supporting athletes and the olympic games for 25 years. people everywhere go with visa.
>> another highest court in the land has now spoken.ç we will continue to implement this lou. and we'll work together to improve on it where we can. but what we won't do, what the country can't afford to do is refight the political battles of two years ago or go back to the way things were. joining me now for an exclusive interview, maryland congressman steny hoyer. i know you thought you had final passage of this bill two years ago, but it turned out final passage was today when the nine
people across the street from you issued their report and they made the medicaid provision optional. left the rest standing. what do you make of their rewrite of the bill? >> well, essentially the bill is whole. we'll have to look at the medicaid provision and see what might need to be done there, but we're very, very pleased. we thought the bill was constitutional. the supreme court has said it's constitutional. it's within our powers and we think the american public can be more secure today than they were yesterday with their assurance that they're going to have access to affordable, quality health care. that was our objective. leader pelosi worked very hard towards that end. president obama worked hard towards that end. we all did. and we think this is a bill that is good for america and we'll bring down costs. we'll provide for seniors with lower prescription drug costs. we'll give young people the ability to stay on their parents' policy until they're 26
if they haven't been able to find a job. we'll make sure the insurance companies cannaueit(táhjr insurance benefits when people get really sick. and we'll particularly importantly make sure that people when they already have an illness will be able to get health care insurance which they need. we think it's a good day for americans. >> congressman hoyer, i've been saying for years that the stubl authority for an individual mandate would lie in the power to tax. that's why the bills were in the tax committee. was it just the semantic risk of using the word tax publicly in the past that made democrats reluctant to cite that particular power? >> well, of course, that was part of the presentation that was made on behalf of the bill, as you know, although it was not the major thrust.
but the fact is, i think this is a contribution. and really, what it is is taking personal responsibility for our own health care and health care insurance, and not passing that along to others and expecting others to pay the bills that you incur when and if you get sick and need medical help. the republicans, of course, are very disappointed today. they were so sure this was going to be held unconstitutional. and of course, justice roberts joined the opinion that the fact, in fact, constitutional. and they're glumming on to this tax provision in the decision to now make the case that we don'tç need to pay for what we buy. >> covering over 30 million people without health care, 17 million of those, the majority
of those, how do you think the next cbo report will score how many people have coverage now that it's optional for all 50 states? >> we're going to make sure that we as many americans as we possibly can covered under health insurance to give them, as i say, that assurance of the availability of coverage. >> before you go, i would like to get your reaction to that contempt vote against the attorney general at the house of representatives today. >> this was politics, not due process. that was choosing confrontation over cooperation. the normal number of days between a committee action and floor action is 87 days. this was 7 days.
it was rushed to judgment. this is all about politics and not about the ability for congress to get the information it needs. the attorney general has been extraordinarily cooperative. turned over 7,600 pieces of documents for the committee to see. and the committee's investigation on the underlying substance of this issue was ç superficial, and they shut out witnesses asked to be called who knew about the incident involved, who knew about the so-called fast and furious process. that's not what this is about. this is about politically going after the attorney general for partisan purposes. >> house democratic whip maryland congressman steny hoyer, thanks for joining me on this historic day in the supreme court and the house of representatives. thank you. coming up, another last word exclusive. the woman whose letter president obama told us about today. she will join me. ♪
why not make lunch more than just lunch? with two times the points on dining in restaurants, you may find yourself asking why not, a lot. chase sapphire preferred. if we took the nissan altima and reimagined nearly everything in it? gave it greater horsepower and best in class 38 mpg highway... ...advanced headlights... ...and zero gravity seats? yeah, that would be cool. ♪ introducing the completely reimagined nissan altima. it's our most innovative altima ever. nissan. innovation that excites. ♪
nissan. innovation that excites. you want to save money on car insurance? no problem. you want to save money on rv insurance? no problem. you want to save money on motorcycle insurance? no problem. you want to find a place to park all these things? fuggedaboud it. this is new york. hey little guy, wake up! aw, come off it mate! geico. saving people money on more than just car insurance.
>> last in the reaction to the supreme court ruling of the health care act is the fact that the supreme court significantly rewrote the health care law. i mean, shouldn't we be actually talking about what the supreme court actually did to the law today? you want to try to guess what we're going to do next? someone's got to do it. and it's what i do. it's very important to understand
how math and science kind of makes the world work. in high school, i had a physics teacher by the name of mr. davies. he made physics more than theoretical, he made it real for me. we built a guitar, we did things with electronics and mother boards. that's where the interest in engineering came from. so now, as an engineer, i have a career that speaks to that passion. thank you, mr. davies.
>> i want to take a minute to talk about exactly what it means for you. first, if you're one of the more an 250 million americans who already have health insurance, you will keep your health insurance. this law will only make it more secure and more affordable. insurance companies can no longer impose lifetime limits on the amount of care you receive. they can no longer discriminate against children with pre-existing conditions.
they can no longer drop your coverage if you get sick. they can no longer jack up your premiums without reason. they are required to provide free preventive care like dhek-ups and mammograms. by this august, nearly 13 million of you will receive a rebate from your insurance company because it spent too much on things like administrative costs and ceo bonuses and not enough on your health care. because of the affordable health care act, young adults until they're 26 are able to stay on their parents' health care plans.ç a provision that's already helped 6 million young americans. all of this is happening because of the affordable health care act. >> that was the president today offering his simplest and clearest explanation ever of what is in the affordable care act. but the supreme court made one significant change to the affordable care act that the president did not mention.
as important as the individual mandate is to the bill, the medicaid provision is is actually more important to coverage. it covers more people than any other pro-strigs in the bill. of the 30 million people that would get the coverage from the bill, 17 million were going to get it from the expansion of medicaid, which the supreme court has now says option is for the states not mandatory. 26 states went to the supreme court saying we don't want the medicaid provision. so a majority of the states now might not adopt the medicaid provision and the congressional budget office estimate of the 17 million who would be covered will surely now have to be revised to a lower figure. the constitutionality of the individual mandate, virtually no one has noticed how much health
care coverage might have been lost today as a result of the supreme court decision. but one former democratic ç governor who understands the decision and had to administer medicaid in his state is worried tonight. >> i'm a little nervous about the medicaid ruling. medicaid has insured more people in this bill than anything else. >> joining me now to analyze the newest provision of the affordable care act as written by the supreme court, ed rendell, the newly appointed director of rhode island's health benefits exchange, a professor at george washington university and the co-host of msnbc's new 3:00 p.m. show "the cycle." okay, governor, you're up. this is now optional, this expansion of medicaid. and so in your state of pennsylvania, which was one of
the states that went to the supreme court saying we don't want it. that's a state with a the republican governor, a republican legislature would have to spend more on medicaid. what are the odds of those republicans in pennsylvania saying okay, yeah, well, the supreme court ruled in our favor, we don't have to take it. but now we will. >> well, i have a better chance tomorrow of being able to comb my hair in a pompadour. that's not going to happen. it can be fixed by the congress, but with the republicans controlling the house, that's not going to happen either.ç it's really a sin because medicaid works. it has a lower administrative cost than virtually any health care provider in the country. and it was a great way to extend coverage. by the way, lawrence, i agree with you. had the president made this
speech on the affordable health care act at the beginning when he sent it to congress, i don't think we would have had half the problems we've had. >> the key was how short it was. you have to keep it short. it doesn't sound complicated when you do that. >> boom, boom, boom. >> christine ferguson, i wanted you to join us, and one of the reasons is to take a bow. you are the actual author of the individual mandate. you wrote the bill back in 1993, which was the very first author zip of the individual mandate in legislative language. back then, i was work on the other side of the aisle, but we talked about it a lot. i always just assumed and i think we all did that the constitutional justification for it was in the power to tax. i don't remember you guys suggesting it was in the commerce clause. >> never. never suggested it was in the commerce clause. it was in the power to tax, absolutely. >> christine, with your experience on the republican side of the aisle and the state administration, you worked with
governor romney. what do you think is going to happen now that the medicaid expansion provision is optional. it covers in the original version of the bill 17 million people. it covers most of the people who pick up coverage. what do you think is going to happen? >> i think it's going to be very challenging for the 26 states that went to the court to juspú say no, we're not going to take 100% of the funds to provide coverage for our citizens. i think that's going to be a tough sell at the end of the day. i think there will be fewer states that won't take advantage of the option. >> christine makes the point it's free money for a while. but then the window closes and the states have to pay 10%. just, for example, some of the costs, even in blue state where is you think they would sign up for this, california, it will
cost california $2 billion additional dollars in the first six years. that's even considering the free money part of it. it averages out to a total addition of $2 billion. i'm in the state of california right now where i can report to you that one of the considerations for the budget crunch here is to cut the number of public school days by 20 down to 160 days in order to balance the budget here. what are the odds in a state like colorado when they're struggling with education costs like that that they're going to say okay, let's add to our medicaid costs. >> you do have to keep in mind, whether they go with the government's program of medicaid expansion or not, they're still going to have a lot of poor people in the state who are going to require some sort of health care. so i think the costs in a way have been exaggerated. but i share your concern. i don't think that all of these 26 states that went to court over this will ultimately say we're not going to participate, but places look texas where in ç
that state alone you have 1.8 million people who would be impacted by this expansion of the medicaid. to me, when you look at the fact that texas has already severed their relationship with the federal government or another medicaid program providing preventive health care to women over a dispute of planned parenthood and the governor turned down stimulus money, this is catnip for a politician trying to gin up their base saying i stuck it to the federal government. i share that concern. i don't think that every state will turn it down, but i do think we will see some red states that definitely decide not to go with it. >> i also think that there's a period of time during which there will be states that start really implementing the entire health care reform act.
and some of those savings are going to accrue and be an important part of the municipality crisis with the pensions, there's a whole bunch of aspects of this that people aren't talking about right now. that impact the possibility of really helping states and state budgets. and i think at the edmonton of the day, states are a whole lot practical than the federal government and they see what other place have been able to do, i think you're going to see more states than not really try to pursue this.
but i want to talk about the politics of it. you're a governor. you want to be president. you want to be considered for vice president or president. can you dare to implement any of the affordable care act? meaning the part that's optional to you. some of you is going to have to implement some that are optional. oh, one of the things i did was implement part of that obama care thing. >> i think you're right, lawrence. i don't think any republican governor that's got any future ambitions is going to accept the medicaid money, because it's going to mean down the road spending more state dollars.= although there are offsets to putting those people on health care saves the state a lot of money, too. it's not quite as clear. but i agree with you. however, on the exchange, the states have the option to let
the federal come in and run their exchanges. i will be interested to see what christine things, but i don't think any republican governors or very few are going to turn those exchanges over to the federal government. >> christine, on the exchanges? >> i totally agree with you on that.ç i think a lot of people who have talked about states just allowing this to go to federal exchange, i can't imagine a governor that i've ever worked with or known that would actually allow that to happen. >> and christine, you're going to set up the exchange in rhode island, aren't you? >> i am. >> ed rendell, krystal ball and my friend and health care teacher and tutor, christine ferguson. thank you all for very much for joining me tonight. >> thanks, lawrence. >> thanks a bunch. coming up, two years ago, president obama quoted a letter about health care from this woman. then he mentioned the letter again today.
as part of a heart healthy diet. that's true. ...but you still have to go to the gym. ♪ the one and only, cheerios thor's couture gets the most rewards of any small business credit card. your boa! [ garth ] thor's small business earns double miles on every purchase, every day! ahh, the new fabrics, put it on my spark card. [ garth ] why settle for less? the spiked heels are working. wait! [ garth ] great businesses deserve the most rewards! [ male announcer ] the spark business card from capital one. choose unlimited rewards with double miles or 2% cash back on every purchase, every day! what's in your wallet? [ cheers and applause ]
two years ago, a woman wrote president obama a letter about health care. and today the president quoted that letter again. ncially. so we switched to the bargain detergent but i found myself using three times more than you're supposed to and the clothes still weren't as clean as with tide. so we're back to tide. they're cuter in clean clothes. thanks, honey. yeah. you suck at folding. [ laughs ] [ female announcer ] just one dose of tide original liquid helps remove food stains better than an entire 40 load bottle of the leading liquid bargain brand. that's my tide. what's yours?
>> really that i would be accounted for somewhere in statistics.ç >> there's a framed letter that hangs in my office right now. it was sent to me during the health care debate by a woman named natoma canfield. for years and years, natoma did everything right. she bought health insurance, she paid her premiums on time. but 18 years ago, natoma was diagnosed with cancer. and even though she had been cancer free for more than a decade, her insurance company kept jacking up her rates year after year. and despite her desire to keep her coverage, despite her fears she would get sick again, she had to surrender her health insurance and hang her fortunes on chance. i carried natoma's story with me every day in the fight to pass this law. >> joining me now by phone is natoma canfield.
thank you very much for joining me tonight. i know two years ago, all you were expecting was your letter would be dropped in the pile and marked as one more in favor of the health care reform. he said he carried it in his pocket every day when he was fighting for this bill. how did that make you feel to hear what the president said today. >> it was just a very big honor. >> and when we talked a couple of years ago, you were then undergoing chemo and radiation treatments. i want to know how you are president. the president said you're now well. >> i'm cancer free. yes, i'm well.ç i've got a long way to go before i'm physically and mentally back to where i was. but -- i'm going to beat this thing. >> there's a passage.
you said i live in the house my mother and father built in 1958. i'm so afraid of the possibility that i might lose this as a result of my being forced to drop my health care insurance. are you still living in that house? >> yes, i am. >> that's great to hear. and what happened to your coverage? you're not still in the private health insurance, are you? >> no. after i dropped my coverage, my worst fears came true. i collapsed at work and they sent the ambulance for me and i found out i had leukemia. from that, the cleveland clinic helped me get on disability and medicaid. you can be on medicaid for two years and now i'm on medicare. >> you're just 53 years old. >> yes. but when you have a disability, yes.
>> natoma, the president called you today. >> yes, he did. >> and what did you talk about? >> well, first of all, he asked how my sister was. she introduced him in ohio when they came. she and my brother had gone to the signing to the health care bill.ç and then he asked how i was. and he told me i was welcome to come to his office and see my letter hanging up in his office anytime i wanted. >> well, i hope you get a chance to do that. michael moore is up next. why not try someplace different every morning? get two times the points on dining in restaurants with chase sapphire preferred. hey. hey eddie. i brought your stuff. you don't have to do this.
yes i do. i want you to keep this. it'd be weird. take care. you too. [ sighs ] so how did it go? he's upset. [ male announcer ] spend less time at gas stations. with best in class fuel economy. it's our most innovative altima ever. ♪ it's our most innovative altima ever. what happens when classroom teachers get the training... ...and support they need? schools flourish and students blossom. that's why programs like... ...the mickelson exxonmobil teachers academy... ...and astronaut sally ride's science academy are helping our educators improve student success in math and science. let's shoot for the stars. let's invest in our teachers and inspire our students. let's solve this.
thought they were dead. huh? [ male announcer ] should've used roundup. it kills weeds to the root, so they don't come back. roundup. no root. no weed. no problem. roundup. good afternoon. chase sapphire. (push button tone) this is stacy from springfield. oh woah. hello? yes. i didn't realize i'd be talking to an actual person. you don't need to press "0" i'm here. reach a person, not a prompt whenever you call chase sapphire.
good for the country. i did it because i believed it was good for the american people. >> joining me, academy filmmaker and activist, michael moore. it's the five-year anniversary release of his documentary "sicko" on the health insurance industry. michael, thank you very much for joining me tonight. the president said he didn't do this because it was a political winner, but he sure looked like a political winner today and it seemed to me he found a way of describing what they were trying to do in health care that really got through to people. >> yeah. it might have been the first actual time he's been on tv and explaining what exactly the health care law was about that made perfect clear sense. if everyone in america had been tuning into that, i think therei would have been loud cheers throughout the country. it's a huge day. it's a great victory.
as you know, you and i, we're critical of the bill that got passed because we thought, you know, fairly watered down and not as far as it should go. and it's going to need to go further in the years to come obviously.ç and we all need to keep working toward a true universal health scare system that doesn't leave 26 million people uninsured as the current law does and how you eloquently pointed out on your show last night. but having said that, i mean, our side, we get so few victories that it's important to celebrate when the ball gets moved down the field. maybe you and i want it moved 50 yards down the field, and make maybe it only moved 20 yards down the field. and that's the big news of the day can is that there's no going back now. >> i think the huge win is that this bill will go forward.
it won't be scary anymor there was a scary sensation about it the public had and the motion it was unconstitutional i think added to this thing that the public had about -- i'm afraid of that thing. and now that's settled. and it is settled by the chief justice of the supreme court. >> right, one of their own on their side of the political fence did the right thing. i'm sure people are upset tonight .but at some point, i think neighbor mr. roberts is in his conscious thought it would be immoral to not uphold this bill.ç it's not that he sided with the liberals, that would have been enough to kind of blow all of our minds, right? but he was the one who actually wrote the majority opinion.
and not only that, he -- he felt that the government didn't really make its primary argument about the commerce clause adequately. so he went and tried to help them essentially write their paper for them. and came up with the tax clause. i mean, that -- he went the extra mile to make this happen. >> he did. and he said in the opinion, that's the supreme court's job. he quoted oliver wendell holmes. he said it's our job to find the constitutionality support for it, even if counsel does not make the right argument. >> right. he does not like the idea of universal health care. i don't think in the past he's cared much for obama. president obama did not vote for him under the supreme court, and chief justice roberts messed up his oath of office on the opening day.
but i just think, you know, this should just, this victory, i think, really should be a mandate for all of us now to just keep moving forward so that everyone is covered and to that private profit making insurance companies are not running the show that piece of it is going to run through the line. it's hurt on some level.ç the division about the bottom line has to be removed. we're 60 years behind the rest of the industrialized world. i know we're slow learners sometimes. but geez, come on now, we've got this piece of it. now let's move forward and get the next piece and the next piece. there's no going back, though. we're on the path leading toward this universal health care. we're not back on the past to oliver twist.
republicans and conservatives who are sitting tonight, thinking we're going to turn this thing around, i'm telling you friends, this is a huge locomotive. but as america experiences the parts of the bill that are really great, they're not going to want to turn this train around. you better get on the train or watch your party implode. that's my words of advice. >> when of the things that's great about it is that the health insurance companies, remember one of the scenes of your movie with linda peno whose job was to deny people coverage. that's no longer a job in these health insurance companies. it's no longer a legal job, anyway. >> that's right, that job is done. they hired doctors, she worked at humana. they hired doctors to sit there and decide who gets to live and who gets to die. and she couldn't take it anymore. she went to testify in front of congress. she felt she dill kilned people because the company saidook, we're not going to make a profit if you accept all these claims ç
that people send in to us. nobody should be sitting in charge like god there and nobody should be making a profit off of somebody's misfortune and illness. that really has to stop all across the board. >> and michael moore gets tonight's last word. thank you very much, michael. >> and president obama, next time watch msnbc when there's a big historic decision to be made. >> yeah. we actually report what happens. >> right. > roberts rules. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington
and let me start with one of the great days in this country's history. united states supreme court led by the chief justice himself decided that president obama's health care act squares with the american constitution. all the drum beating floated up from the right wing fever swamps are as of today, simply the hate vapors of the rejection. the rear guard funded by the koch and u.s. chamber of commerce. today's hero, chief justice john roberts who said yes to progress and no to the role prescribed for him by the right. he would not be the man, lead the court, let the court name for him carry historic plqyd health care to tens of millions of americans. right leaning partisan appearing supreme court ruling that would have been the third strike over the plate following bush-gore and citizens united. let's start by looking at this bold, defiant, grand decision by mr. roberts and his supreme court.