Published: Fri, December 21, 2018
Health Care | By Cedric Leonard

Core provisions of 'Obamacare' ruled unconstitutional by Texas federal judge

Core provisions of 'Obamacare' ruled unconstitutional by Texas federal judge

Democratic lawmakers hit back against a federal judge's ruling in favor of 19 states that argued that several key provisions of the Affordable Care Act, or "Obamacare", are unconstitutional. That latter group will also include many Republicans who campaigned on the promise to protect people with pre-existing conditions and could face political consequences if they renege on that.

"If you're going to take away the Affordable Care Act, how will you protect the millions of people now using it for health insurance for their family?" If you haven't registered yet, you can do by visiting the Healthcare.gov website.

U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor, in a 55-page opinion Friday, said the elimination previous year of a requirement for individuals to have health insurance made the entire law invalid.

While Republicans like President Donald Trump lauded a Texas judge's decision last week that the Affordable Care Act - colloquially known as Obamacare - needed to be repealed, not everyone in the party is certain that this issue will redound to their political benefit. In response, more and more democrats are shifting towards supporting a Medicare For All-type of program.

"The fact that they could cause their fellow Republicans harm did not seem to bother them", said Wilensky, a critic of President Barack Obama's signature domestic achievement.

In a tweet Saturday morning, Sen Angus King, I-Maine, noted the court ruling would not affect consumers buying insurance. On top of that, they said if the mandate is struck down, the entire law should be nullified because the provision is so vital.

"Mitch and Nancy, get it done!"

Republicans who tried to undermine those safeguards during their failed effort to repeal the health law a year ago were forced on the defensive and went on record saying they, too, want to make sure people with health problems can get coverage.

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The campaign was initiated by Brian Kolfage , who is a triple amputee, a Purple Heart Recipient and a motivational speaker. Trump even took to Twitter to reaffirm his stance on the wall claiming that they'd get it built "one way or the other".


What O'Connor did do was issue his decision in the form of a "declaratory judgment" - essentially, an extended statement of how he had sorted out the rights of the challengers and of the defenders of Obamacare, siding totally with the challengers.

Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer condemned the "awful" ruling and vowed congressional action as soon as possible for an "intervention" in the case.

"As the individual mandate was an essential element of the ACA, the whole of Obamacare was therefore unconstitutional", O'Connor said.

The opposition Democrats were quick to raise their voice against the ruling by the federal district judge. That could include the section that allows parents to keep young adult children on their coverage until age 26.

"It looks like the ruling is weak and it's probably not going to be upheld by 5th Circuit, the Court of Appeals, or even the Supreme Court", Kirkwood says. The case will likely head to the Supreme Court.

"The legal merits of the case are frivolous", said University of MI law professor Nicholas Bagley.

In the wake of a Texas judge striking down the Obamacare health insurance law, Sen. The rest of the law can not be separated from that provision and is therefore invalid, he wrote.

The case will be appealed, said Hill, and it will take many years to get to the Supreme Court, so "nothing is happening" with regard to the high deductibles involved in many Obamacare plans.

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