US federal judge rules Obamacare unconstitutional

15 December, 2018, 08:02 | Author: Bruce West
  • An open enrollment page on the

The ruling is expected to be appealed to the Supreme Court and the law will remain in effect until the appeals process is over.

Although Democratic attorneys general, lawmakers, and policy analysts have repeatedly maintained that the TCJA zeroed out the penalty rather than eliminated it, O'Connor disagreed.

He ruled that the individual mandate was now unconstitutional. "It also stated that the absence of the individual mandate would "undercut" its 'regulation of the health insurance market'".

Twenty states, including Texas, backed the lawsuit, which asked the judge to call for a cease and desist to Obamacare enforcement. It agreed that the zeroing out the penalty renders the individual mandate unconstitutional but argued that that invalidates only the law's protections of those with pre-existing conditions.

"If this bad ruling is upheld in the higher courts, it will be a disaster for tens of millions of American families, especially for people with pre-existing conditions", said Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y.

"There is nothing more American than ensuring that every citizen has access to the lifesaving and necessary health care they need".

"While the district court's absurd ruling will be immediately appealed, Republicans are fully responsible for this cruel decision and for the fear they have struck into millions of families across America who are now in danger of losing their health coverage", House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said in a statement.

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The Trump administration said in June that it would not defend several important provisions of Obamacare in court.

In oral arguments in September, a lawyer for California said that the harm from striking down the law would be "devastating" and that more than 20 million Americans were able to gain health insurance under it. The decision comes amid a six-week open enrollment period for the program.

Congress, however, eliminated the tax penalty last December as part of President Trump's major tax overhaul.

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise boasted his chamber passed a law to replace Obamacare in May 2017, however, leaving the situation in chaos.

"We'll continue to fight in court for New Yorkers and all Americans", she said on Twitter.

Since Judge O'Connor did not issue an injunction, the Affordable Care Act and its provisions will remain intact for the time being, meaning no one with an insurance plan via the ACA will lose coverage. California and other states had intervened to defend the 2010 health care law after the Trump administration declined to defend its provisions that guarantee coverage for people with pre-existing conditions, arguing that those provisions can not be separated from the mandate. And the ban on excluding pre-existing conditions from coverage meant that insurers can not refuse to pay for treatments because of a policyholder's medical background.

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