OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Democrats in Washington state are celebrating the U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.
The court ruling Thursday morning upheld the individual insurance requirement at the heart of the law.
Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler said he was relieved by the decision.
He says that with the decision out of the way "we can continue our focus on where it should be -- bringing relief to families struggling to find quality, affordable health insurance."
Online insurance exchanges are key to the federal health care law, and in March, Gov. Chris Gregoire signed into law a bill setting rules for insurers preparing for the state's online insurance exchange set to go live on Jan. 1, 2014.
Congressman Jim McDermott calls the Supreme Court's upholding the health care law the biggest advance in social justice since Social Security 75 years ago. He said everybody can look forward to having health insurance security in 2014.
"With regards to health care, there's no going back to 2009 or 1789," said Rep. Rick Larsen. "Improvements to our health care are taking root right now, and that progress will continue for Northwest Washington and the rest of America. The Supreme Court's decision today to uphold the Affordable Care Act is a welcome result for middle class families across Northwest Washington and will bolster the necessary changes taking place in health care."