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Loss of insurance mandate wouldn’t kill health law

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WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama's health care law would not collapse if the Supreme Court strikes down the unpopular requirement that most Americans carry medical insurance or face a penalty.

Experts say the overhaul would lurch ahead.

But it would make an already complicated law a lot harder to carry out, risking repercussions for a U.S. health care system widely seen as wasteful, unaffordable and unable to deliver consistently high quality.

Premiums could jump for people buying coverage individually, and for small businesses. That's because other provisions of the law require insurance companies to accept people with health problems, and limit the premiums that can be charged to older adults.

Sooner or later, the dilemma of the nation's 50 million uninsured would land back on the doorstep of Congress.