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Kansans In Congress Vow To Push For Repeal Of Health Law; Brownback Criticizes SCOTUS Decision

Stephen Koranda file photo

An advocacy group in Kansas is relieved that the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld a key part of the federal health care overhaul, but members of the state's congressional delegation say they'll still push for its repeal.

The high court on Thursday upheld health insurance subsidies for millions of consumers who purchased their coverage through a federal online marketplace. Kansas refused to set up its own exchange under the 2010 law.

The Kansas Association for the Medically Underserved called the high court decision "a huge victory for consumers."

The Kaiser Family Foundation estimated that about 70,000 Kansas consumers were receiving subsidies averaging $231 a month.

But Republican Sen. Pat Roberts and GOP congressmen Tim Huelskamp and Mike Pompeo issued statements promising to seek repeal of the law.

From the AP:

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is criticizing a U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding a key portion of the federal health overhaul and is not changing his stance on expanding Medicaid.

Spokeswoman Eileen Hawley said Thursday in a statement that the decision is disappointing and ignores the federal law's actual language. The court's majority upheld health insurance subsidies for consumers in states like Kansas that refused to set up their own online marketplaces.

Brownback and other Republicans blame the law championed by Democratic President Barack Obama for rising health insurance costs.

Kansas so far has refused to expand its Medicaid program to cover residents not eligible for subsidies.

Hawley said Brownback still believes the state must first provide services to the disabled and then ensure it can sustain an expansion long-term.