We’ll be honest. We were pretty floored with how the Supreme Court decision came out on Thursday, but we don’t feel so bad since apparently, we weren’t the only ones surprised:
President Barack Obama was standing outside the Oval Office when he saw the news on television just after 10 a.m. Two networks, CNN and Fox News, were reporting the Supreme Court had struck down the centerpiece of his landmark healthcare law.
He looked quizzically at the TV screen.
Moments later, his face brightened. White House Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler walked in and flashed him two thumbs-up. The court had in fact upheld the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The TV networks had reported it wrong.
Obama experienced some cognitive dissonance at that moment, a senior administration official told reporters. As Ruemmler was giving him the signal for good news, the headlines on the television screen still indicated the mandate had fallen.
The White House lawyer’s sign trumped the cable networks’ reports for the president, who smiled and gave Ruemmler a hug. His biggest domestic policy achievement, and with it a large part of his legacy, was still intact.
Were you surprised by the Supreme Court decision on Obamacare? Tell us about it in our discussion forum!