Democratic states begin formal appeal of Texas judge's ACA ruling

A group of 17 Democratic states filed a notice of appeal Jan. 3 challenging a recent ruling that the ACA is unconstitutional, kicking off what is likely to be a lengthy litigation process, The Texas Tribune reports.

The notice, filed in the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, formally begins the appeals process. It was filed by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, on behalf of California, the District of Columbia and 15 other Democratic-led states.

It challenges U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor's ruling in Texas v. United States, in which he declared the ACA unconstitutional. The lawsuit was brought by Texas and 19 other Republican-led states, and it seeks to undo the ACA via the individual mandate. The lawsuit claims the individual mandate became unconstitutional when the 2017 tax law eliminated the associated penalty. The mandate had previously been ruled a tax by the Supreme Court. Without a penalty, the "tax" is unconstitutional. The lawsuit claims the mandate is also unseverable from the rest of the law — so if the mandate is unconstitutional, so is the whole ACA.

Read the full story here.  


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