What Exactly are Reform Lawsuits Arguing?

February 24, 2011 in Affordable Health Insurance, College Students, Dependants, Employer Sponsored Plans, Health Care, Health Care Costs, Health Care Reform, Health Insurance Exchange, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Health Insurance, Specialists

What Exactly are Reform Lawsuits Arguing?

By Ashley Ahle
February 24th, 2011

Lawsuits being filed against the Obama administration’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), have amounted to the unconstitutionality of the individual mandate, and whether the federal government has the legal power to enforce such a provision. Currently out of five lawsuits that have made it to the courts, two of them have passed while still three have been ruled constitutional.

Tuesday night, United States District Judge Gladys Kessler ruled in favor of health reform, stating that it does not violate the individual’s religious freedoms. She also stated that Congress is well within their means to penalize people who forgo insurance. under the Commerce Clause in the constitution.

A ruling in favor of a 26 state lawsuit against reform in Florida was upheld by Judge Roger Vinson. He dismissed the law in it’s entirety stating that picking apart the law and taking out the mandate would render it “toothless” anyway. The administration is asking Vinson to further clarify his ruling and will more than likely seek a stay of judgment, further delaying the case’s move to the Supreme Court.

When fighting the reform, the state’s main fear is that it would give the government too much power by allowing it to penalize individuals without, and force people to purchase health insurance. In defense, the government claims that everyone will buy health care at some point whether it’s with insurance or in an emergency. Without the mandate, premiums would skyrocket and no one would benefit.

Parts of the constitution that are being used in these cases are Commerce Clause, Supremacy Clause (states that federal power is supreme over state power), and the 10th amendment which leaves to the state “all powers not explicitly granted to the federal government go to the state.”

While it remains to be heard in the Supreme Court, it is also unclear if the PPACA can stand without the individual mandate. There may be too many other parts of the bill connected with the mandate that would have to be repealed or changed as well.

Don’t let any of this confuse you as these cases have yet to make it to the supreme court. As of now there has been no final decision about repeal and the cases are still being heard around the country.

Leave a reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Skip to toolbar