For the first time, a court has taken a step to dismantle President Obama’s health care reform, finding Monday that one of the complex legislation’s provisions is unconstitutional.
Federal District Court Judge Henry Hudson, sitting in Richmond, Va., ruled that the law’s mandate that most Ameicans get health insurance exceeds the authority given to Congress under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution, The New York Times reported.
The 42-page ruling, by a judge who was appointed by President George W. Bush, marked the first time that a court has not upheld any portion of Obama’s sweeping health care reform. Two other district courts, in Detroit and Lynchburg, Va., have already supported the legality of the health care reform.
In his ruling Judge Hudson wrote that his check of case law “yielded no reported decisions from any federal appellate courts extending the Commerce Clause or General Welfare clause to encompass regulation of a person’s decision not to purchase a product, not withstanding its effect on interstate commerce or role in a global regulatory scheme,” The Times reported.
Judge Hudson, however, refused to stay implementation of health care reform pending appeal, meaning that the law can continue being implemented as the appeals process continues.
There have been lawsuits filed by Republican state Attorney Generals across the nation challenging the constitutionality of Obama’s wide-ranging health care law. As for the judicial branch, “judges appointed by Republican presidents have rulesd consistently against the Obama administration while Democratic appointees have found for it,” according to The Times.