Court Calls Health Law Unconstitutional

Appellate panel says insurance mandate is unconstitutional
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 12, 2011 12:49 PM CDT
President Obama's health care overhaul lost a legal fight.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – A federal appeals court today struck down the requirement in President Obama's health care overhaul package that virtually all Americans must carry health insurance or face penalties. A divided three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the so-called individual mandate, siding with 26 states that had sued to block the law. A different appellate court upheld the law in June, and today's ruling makes it even more likely that the Supreme Court will have the ultimate say.

"This economic mandate represents a wholly novel and potentially unbounded assertion of congressional authority: the ability to compel Americans to purchase an expensive health insurance product they have elected not to buy, and to make them re-purchase that insurance product every month for their entire lives," said judges Joel Dubina and Frank Hull in a joint opinion.

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