Trump signals healthcare reform to overtake 'unconstitutional' Obamacare

Saul Bowman
December 18, 2018

Other users also wanted to poke fun at Trump and his vision for health care.

In 2010, shortly after passage of the ACA, several parties challenged the constitutionality of the law on various grounds, including Congress' authority to regulate insurance under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who led the lawsuit, has argued that the entire law should be struck down after Congress zeroed out the tax penalty for the individual mandate - the part of the law that requires people to buy health insurance - in 2017.

Shares of health insurers, hospitals, and healthcare companies fell in early trading on Monday, after a federal judge ruled the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, unconstitutional late last week. "The Individual Mandate is essential to and inseverable from the remainder of the ACA". Ahead of the midterms, almost 60 percent of likely voters said they wanted to keep the ACA, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll in late October.

He said the U.S. Supreme Court's conservative wing has been skeptical in the past of striking down entire laws because of a single problematic provision, and at least a bare majority of five justices would likely agree that O'Connor was wrong.

The White House applauded O'Connor's ruling, but said the law remains in place while appeals proceed.

"Judge O'Connor's opinion was legally indefensible from start to finish", Laurence Tribe, a professor at Harvard Law School, told Salon by email.

"He could have taken a much more surgical approach and just struck down the individual mandate and kept the rest of the law intact", Collins also said of the judge on ABC's "This Week". In fact, Republicans just spent a majority of the 2018 midterm election cycle affirming their support for protections for pre-existing conditions.

This caught many by surprise, as the Trump administration had simply argued in joining the attack on the law that the removal of the insurance mandate's penalty would merely invalidate some of the statute's consumer protections, but that the remainder of the law could remain in force as legally distinct. "Open enrollment is proceeding as planned today".


The pre-existing condition issue played a major role in the Democrats winning control last month of the House by picking up 40 seats, Durbin said.

Because the district court did not issue an injunction, immediate compliance by the federal government and affected private stakeholders is not yet required. The case will likely head to the Supreme Court.

If the Fifth Circuit were to affirm the decision, the Supreme Court would nearly certainly grant review. Our guess is that even the right-leaning Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals judges will overturn Judge O'Connor on this point.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal believes Congress will step in. Its provisions on pre-existing condition coverage involve a proposed block on this year's HHS regulations that expanded so-called short-term plans and association health plans.

Seema Verma, the administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which oversees those insurance exchanges, said in a tweet: "The recent federal court decision is still moving through the courts, and the exchanges are still open for business and we will continue with open enrollment". He added the ruling could raise prices for premiums and prescription drugs for all Americans.

Obama responded on Saturday by saying in a Facebook post that "Republicans will never stop trying to undo" the health-care law and urging people to continue to get covered under the ACA as the decision makes its way through the courts in what could be a prolonged appeals process. "The former enacted the ACA".

Plus, Pogue warned, brand new changes made to the waiver requirements allowing them to pay for so-called short-term plans could result in people getting handed "junk" health insurance.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra in a statement said the Democrats would appeal Friday's decision.

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