Lawmakers Plan Brief Supporting Lawsuit Against Reform Law

By Staff Report

Nov. 12, 2010

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, intends to file a friend-of-the-court brief supporting a lawsuit against the Obama administration’s health care law brought by officials from 20 states in federal court in Florida.

Republicans, emboldened by the midterm election results, are ratcheting up attacks on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, issued a news release saying he would join McConnell on the brief, which has yet to be filed in U.S. District Court in Pensacola.

The news comes as 19 organizations, including Families USA and the American Academy of Pediatrics, requested permission to file a brief backing the administration.

According to Hatch’s release, the brief to be filed on behalf of members of the Senate argues that the law’s mandate for individuals to buy health insurance “dramatically oversteps the bounds of the Commerce Clause” of the Constitution.

“Liberty requires limits on government, and those limits do not allow Congress to dictate economic decisions rather than regulate economic activities,” Hatch said in the release.

Judge Roger Vinson ruled in October to allow the core of the lawsuit to proceed. The plaintiffs in the lawsuit include 19 state attorneys general, outgoing Nevada Gov. Jim Gibbons and the National Federation of Independent Business. Oral arguments on the merits of the case are scheduled for Dec. 16.  

Filed by Gregg Blesch of Modern Healthcare, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail


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