Monday, January 31, 2011

Florida Judge Finds Health Care Law Unconstitutional

A federal judge in Florida ruled the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional. In his 78-page opinion, Judge Roger Vinson found the individual mandate portion of the law to be outside Congress's Commerce Clause power and unsupportable under the Necessary and Proper Clause. Finding the individual mandate portion could not be severed from the rest of the act, he ruled that the law must be struck down in its entirety.

Vinson is not the first federal judge to find the individual mandate portion of the act unconstitutional. In December 2010, Judge Henry E. Hudson of the Eastern District of Virginia also struck down the mandate as unconstitutional, but unlike Vinson, he found the individual mandate severable and let the act stand.

Two other federal district courts in Virginia and Michigan have heard challenges on the law and have found the individual mandate portion to be within Congress's power under the Commerce Clause. Due to the conflicting rulings, as well as the controversial nature of the law, such challenges are expected to make their way to the Supreme Court. Until then, the Justice Department plans on appealing today's ruling to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

The White House has also issued an response to today's ruling on its official blog.

To learn more about legal challenges to the Affordable Care Act click here.


Chris Taus said...

It matters not. Obama will ignore the decision, as he did the one on the gulf drilling ban, and full steam ahead with this and all of his agenda until he is actually stopped. He will also remain in office until he can be proven ineligible and actually be removed, highly unlikely.

underarm sweating said...

The Florida court case marked the largest challenge so far to the health-reform law, including governors and attorneys general from 26 states opposed to the legislation.