Democratic attorneys general appeal ruling that struck down Affordable Care Act

Grant Boone
January 4, 2019

Last month, Becerra and this same blue coalition of lawmakers requested that the Texas court's decision be suspended while the legal challenge makes its way through the court system.

Weiser's win in Colorado was one of four state attorney general races Democrats picked up in the 2018 midterm elections, giving the California-led coalition a potential boost over the Texas-led coalition of Republican state attorneys general who sued to overturn the ACA.

Becerra argued the decision lacked clarity and requested that an appeal of the district court's December 14 opinion be heard by the Fifth Circuit, which has jurisdiction over northern Texas.

Democratic attorneys general on Thursday appealed a federal court ruling that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional, as new enrollment numbers underscored the staying power of the Obama-era law. The newly Democratic-led House of Representatives is expected to allow its legal counsel to intervene in the case and join the appellants, with a formal vote on a resolution expected to take place next week.

· 133 million Americans, including 17 million kids, with preexisting health conditions.

"Our goal is simple: to stand up for the law of the land - the Affordable Care Act - in order to keep healthcare affordable and accessible for millions of Americans", Becerra said. That timeline also means the health-care law will likely continue to be a major political issue, including in the 2020 presidential campaign. Those provisions include prohibitions on insurers charging higher premiums or denying coverage for people with pre-existing health conditions.

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Because O'Connor had already stayed his ruling pending appeal, Americans who have signed up for Obamacare individual health plans or have Medicaid coverage under provisions of the law are not affected by his ruling in the case.

Serr said growth in the state's population could be fueling the increase in insurance enrollment, as well as an increasing familiarity with Obamacare plans and Healthcare.gov among consumers.

The House's entry into the highly visible case in a federal trial court in Fort Worth, Texas, and its imminent entry into the case as an appeal reaches the federal court of appeals based in New Orleans, did not need the approval of the Senate (still under Republican control) because it involved only an action of the House.

The first of those decisions ruled that the individual mandate requiring most people to have health coverage or face a fine was a tax, and hence was constitutional.

Ordinarily, the Justice Department has the assignment of defending the constitutionality of laws passed by Congress.

While that argument is widely disputed, even by long-standing critics of Obamacare, O'Connor endorsed it with his ruling. "The Trump administration shows little regard for Americans' health care, lives or the law".

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