AUSTIN -- The U.S. Supreme Court ruling to uphold the president's health care law is a victory for Democrats, yet many Republicans argue it could be a windfall for them as well.
Mitt Romney reported raising more than $4 million in the 24 hours following the court's ruling Thursday morning. His vow Thursday to repeal the Affordable Care Act, referred to by some as "Obamacare," has quickly become the rallying cry for conservative candidates from the top down.
In the race for Texas' open seat in the U.S. Senate, candidate and Texas Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst responded to the ruling with a new ad Thursday afternoon promising to repeal the health care law if elected. Meanwhile, opponent Ted Cruz spoke with reporters at a planned media conference Thursday morning in Dallas.
"I'm going to predict right now this decision today from the Supreme Court, this shameful decision from the Supreme Court, is only going to add strength to the great awakening that is sweeping the country," said Cruz. "The battle now goes to the ballot box."
Among conservative pundits, Cruz is not alone in his prediction. Protests over the health care law in 2010 played a large part in the Tea Party's rise to power, and some conservatives hope a new wave of opposition will result from the court's decision.
"The base on the right is frustrated, angry, energized, activated," Republican political consultant Matt Mackowiak told KVUE. "Using negative emotion is a hell of a motivator for people. It's a real motivator to get you to the polls, and I think that the harbinger of 'Obamacare' hanging over a lot of people is a real reason to go vote on Election Day in November."
Mackowiak says while the health care issue has certainly fired up the party base, Republicans' overall strategy will continue to focus on the economy.
"If it's staying the same, its going to be close. If its getting worse, I think Romney could win a significant victory, if its getting better, I think Obama could win," said Mackowiak. "So health care fits into that, because its all about the anxiety that people feel about the economy."
"There's no evidence out there that there's going to be a big wave one way or the other," said Democratic political consultant Jason Stanford. "Democrats now feel like winners, and that's a rare, rare occurrence for national Democrats. Right now we feel like we've got the wind at our back just a little bit."
Stanford argues Republicans have little to gain from the court's ruling.
"It took away the biggest argument that Republicans had that this was unconstitutional and now they can't make that argument anymore," said Stanford. "Now they have to completely change their message on this. There is a core bunch of Republicans who are mad as hell about this, but they were already mad as hell about this."
Both say much will depend on how swing voters view the health care law in light of the court's decision, a factor pollsters will be sure to delve into in the coming weeks.