by Tom Howell, Jr., The Washington Times
The Trump administration told a federal court Thursday it won’t defend Obamacare against a lawsuit that’s trying to strike down most of the law.
It’s a notable stance that means it will be up to Obamacare fans such as Democratic governors to step in and defend the Affordable Care Act against on onslaught from GOP attorneys general, who say after Congress nixed the individual mandate at the heart of the law, the rest of it should follow.
In court papers, the Justice Department said it doesn’t want to stop the law in its tracks, but said they agreed with the plaintiffs who say the most famous parts of the law are now illegal.
The crux of the argument goes back to Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr.’s 2012 ruling upholding the constitutionality of the individual mandate as a valid use of Congress’s taxing power. The court held that Congress was able to offer people a choice: get insurance, or pay a tax.
If there is no tax penalty for not buying insurance now, then no taxation is taking place, so the other parts of the law tied to the individual mandate must go, the 20 GOP attorneys general argue.
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