A national drama is playing out today in New Orleans as Obamacare is on trial and faces potential jeopardy. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments about the current constitutional standing of the signature Obama bill.
Legal experts on both sides of the challenge say that the arguments against the law are weak and will not lead to a strike of the law. However, the challenge has already been awarded once. In December, Judge Reed O’Connor struck down the law as unconstitutional. According to Reed, the removal of the individual mandate made the constitutional arguments for the law invalid. In other words, removing the individual mandate made the law unconstitutional. After the ruling, a stay was issued to wait out the appeal process.
The History of Obamacare On Trial
This is not the first time Obamacare has been on trial. The Supreme Court upheld the law in a 5-4 decision in June 2012. In that case, Justice Roberts wrote the deciding opinion upholding the law. The rationale of Roberts said that the individual mandate was equal to Congress’ power to levy taxes. The decision has remained a controversy in political and legal circles.
Since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions have obtained insurance. However, premiums are also at an all-time high, increasing each year. This continues the controversy over the healthcare law.
What Is Happening Today?
Let’s look at a brief timeline of events leading to today.
- Congress passes tax reform bill in the Fall of 2018. This included removing the individual mandate from the Affordable Care Act.
- December 14, 2018 – Judge Reed O’Connor strikes down ACA as unconstitutional without the individual mandate.
- January 3, 2019 – House of Representatives file motion to intervene.
- February 8, 2019 – Government files opposition to the House intervention.
- February 14, 2019 – Fifth Circuit allows motion to intervene.
- July 9, 2019 – Oral Arguments
Oral arguments are scheduled to happen at 1pm Central today in New Orleans. While we will hear the arguments today, a decision will not be made until a later date. However, today’s proceedings can indicate which direction the court is taking.
Keep up-to-date with the latest information regarding the case at our ACA Ruling page.