In a historic decision, the Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the critical piece of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, the individual mandate.

By upholding the individual mandate — the requirement for all Americans to acquire health insurance — the court kept what many described as the “heart” of the law. The decision creates some certainty surrounding federal health care policy, allowing federal and state rulemakers to, for now, implement the law.

The decision was five to four, with Chief Justice John Roberts siding with the liberal justices and writing the majority opinion.

Complete Coverage: Health Care

The court found fault with one major provision of the law, which would have expanded Medicaid coverage. Currently, Medicaid is a joint federal-state program that provides health care to certain poor Americans, such as children and the elderly. In 2014, the Affordable Care Act would have opened up Medicaid to anyone with an income under 138 percent of the federal poverty line.

CBS news excerpt

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