How the Supreme Court's ruling on the health law will play in the 2012 presidential election is unclear, but the White House and the Obama campaign have to be breathing a sigh of relief.
*** UPDATE *** Transcript appended:
I’m Domenico Montanaro with your First Read Minute, and Mark this morning breaking news that the Supreme Court by a 5-4 decision – it seems like everything’s 5-4 nowadays – upheld the health care law. Big news. What’s your take?
MARK MURRAY: Well, Domenico, we just don’t know what the politics are. This could go in many different ways for the 2012 presidential election. But here’s what we do know – that this preserves a key Democratic Party/President Obama policy achievement. This is something that goes down in the history books. No one knows the politics. We might not even know the policy on how this would actually work in the long run [if there would be challenges in Congress, etc.] But Democrats, who paid a huge price for this health-care reform in 2009 and 2010, get to keep that achievement.
MONTANARO: Yeah, and Republican messaging has been really consistent on this. I think they were prepared either way for what it would be. We’ve seen the conservative base already be fired up. The Romney campaign says that they’ve raised about $200,000 so far since the announcement in just a couple hours. But the fact remains, if this law had been struck down, it would have been a major body blow to the president. The fact that it was upheld is something that-- the White House has to exhale a big sigh of relief.
MURRAY: And Domenico, as you and I were talking about, as Republicans like Mitt Romney end up saying they want full repeal, one question they need to answer is how do you actually achieve that -- even with a Republican in the White House and a Republican majority in the U.S. Senate?
MONTANARO: And more than that, what would Mitt Romney do specifically to repeal it that would be different-- or to replace it that would be different than what he did in Massachusetts? So, I think that’s a big question that Romney’s going to have to eventually answer. Still, this election, all about the economy.
MURRAY: That’s right.
MONTANARO: I’m Domenico Montanaro—
MURRAY: And I’m Mark Murray
MONTANARO: --and that’s your early read on First Read.