U.S. District Court Judge Roger Vinson appears to be inclined to let plaintiffs move ahead with a suit arguing that the Affordable Care Act package violates states’ Constitutional rights.
Vinson has been hearing oral arguments at the U.S. District Court in Pensacola, Fla., on whether he ought to dismiss the case, State of Florida et al. vs. United States Department of Health and Human Services et al., Case 3:10-cv-00091-RV-EMT.
The plaintiffs are officials from 20 states and the National Federation of Independent Business, Nashville, Tenn.
The defendants include the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the U.S. Treasury Department, the U.S. Labor Department, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, and Labor Secretary Hilda Solis.
Vinson is supposed to make an official decision about the status of the case by Oct. 14. Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum has said he believes the judge has indicated that he already has decided against dismissing the suit, according to press reports.
The Obama administration has argued that the government needed to create the Affordable Care Act, the package that includes the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), to tackle a situation in which care is more expensive than in the rest of the world, some have no health coverage, and competition among private health insurers is dwindling. They say