Federal Court Ruling That Obamacare Subsidies Are Illegal Expected To Be Overturned


Today, in a 2-1 split decision, the Republican judges on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals embraced a controversial interpretation of the ACA that believes all subsidies issued through the federal marketplace are illegal. The decision is expected to be overturned.

The ruling depended on a narrow reading of the statute to conclude that subsidies are only legal for state exchanges, “Because we conclude that the ACA unambiguously restricts the section 36B subsidy to insurance purchased on Exchanges ‘established by the State,’ we reverse the district court and vacate the IRS’s regulation.”

The only way that this ruling makes any sense at all is if one ignored the legislative intent of Congress when the law was drafted.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said during his daily briefing, “While this ruling is interesting to legal theorists, it has no practical impact” on individuals’ ability to currently receive tax credits for their health care. You don’t need a fancy legal degree to understand Congress intended” for qualified individuals to receive tax credits regardless of who was administering the exchange.

Two courts had previously ruled in favor of the administration. This is the first ruling that has gone against the ACA.

The likely outcome here was described by Ron Pollack of Families USA:

It is most likely that today’s split decision, which would take away premium subsidies for almost five million low- and moderate-income people, will never go into effect.

It will inevitably be placed on hold pending further proceedings; will probably be reheard by all of the 11-member active D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals members, who predictably will reverse it; and runs contrary to an expected ruling on a similar case in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Today’s decision represents the high-water mark for Affordable Care Act opponents, but the water will recede very quickly.

The Republican victory today was fairly meaningless. It is extremely unlikely that it will hold up on appeal, and it is questionable as to whether or not that the Supreme Court would agree to hear the case. Republicans are celebrating something that in the big picture will not change anything.

Ironically, this “victory” will end up politically backfiring on the GOP. Over 18 million people have health insurance thanks to the ACA. Republicans are now arguing that those people should lose the subsidies that help cover the cost of their insurance. Democrats can argue that Republicans are trying to raise the cost of health insurance.

Republicans want to make the 2014 election about Obamacare, but thanks to this ruling, Democrats will be forcing them into a discussion that they don’t want to have. The Republican Party continues to rejoice over the prospect of Americans being denied affordable healthcare. This is why the GOP is will pay at the ballot box in November

27 Replies to “Federal Court Ruling That Obamacare Subsidies Are Illegal Expected To Be Overturned”

  1. This is what gave them a woody
    , a three-judge panel on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals has voted by a two-to-one margin to defund Obamacare in states which did not set up their own health insurance exchanges. At issue is whether Obamacare allows subsidies in federally-established exchanges.

    But that didn’t last long,roughly two hours after a D.C. circuit court panel ruled that Obamacare does not allow subsidies in federally-run exchanges, a panel in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, located in Virginia, has unanimously ruled that Obamacare does allow such subsidies.
    Nice try rethugs but you failed again

  2. And meanwhile, they STILL refuse to fund our crumbling highways and bridges, refuse to do anything but wave their hankies over immigration, refuse to support the administration’s attempts at diplomacy over bombs, cheer when women’s rights are corroded, and will do anything in their power to block minority voting. And for this, we are supposed to see the GOP as ‘Christian’ and patriotic? Please proceed, Preibus. Your party is disgusting, and more so every day.

  3. Red states: “We choose to opt out of the ACA exchange program, because we care more about right wing ideology than we do the health and welfare of our constituents.”

    Red states: “Since we chose not to participate, our constituents are not eligible for these subsidies. Therefore we conclude that the federal funds provided under the exchange program are unconstitutional.”

    Conservative appellate judges: “Sounds good to us.”

  4. These creatures are the real death panels. There is blood on the hands of these Republicans who are willing to sacrifice American citizens lives to satisfy their lust for money, power and hatred of this POTUS.

  5. If this doesn’t blow up in the Republican’s collective faces in November then we might as well give up and rename this country the United States of the One Percent.

  6. It doesn’t surprise me of out the DC court they’re notorious for bad rulings. This will be overturned for sure.

  7. I’m with you Charles. I have been hoping since the days of Reagan that the country would realize what the right is all about.

    If the actions of the Republicans in the last several years doesn’t do it, I think I’ll just give up and spend my few remaining years trying not to think about how stupid some people are.

  8. It already has: a panel in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, located in Virginia, has unanimously ruled that Obamacare does allow such subsidies.

    From the opinion:

    What they may not do is rely on our help to deny to millions of Americans desperately – needed health insurance through a tortured, nonsensical construction of a federal statute whose manifest purpose, as revealed by the wholeness and coherence of its text and structure, could not be more clear.

  9. Lindsay Graham is undoubtedly the BEST hanky waver. It’s a combination of fine lace and his raised pinky.

  10. the republicans are probably smiling, especially cruz, but the smiles will leave their faces in several months.

  11. It’s death by a thousand cuts.

    FIVE MILLION PEOPLE would be affected by this.

    Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the real DEATH PANELS.

  12. Republicans cannot mask the overall turning from them which is the national phenom of wisdom today.

  13. “You don’t need a fancy legal degree to understand Congress intended”

    This is a great point since most all of those who voted for ACA admit not even having read it.

  14. Few will admit to not doing their job as an elected official, but here’s a few top Dems:

    “We Have to Pass the Bill So That You Can Find Out What Is In It” –Pelosi

    “I don’t think you want me to waste my time to read every page of the health care bill. You know why? It’s statutory language. We hire experts.” –Max Baucus

  15. Pelosi WAS TALKING ABOUT YOUR DAMN LIES ABOUT DEATH PANELS DUMBASS. To what Baucus said that’s why there are staffers who do their jobs something republicans don’t do since Gingrich cut staffing back in the 90’s

  16. It would have been really helpful if those who voted on ObamaCare would have read it first.

    They wouldn’t have been surprised at the medical device tax and 16 of ’em had to petition Harry Reid to delay the implementation of it.

    It’s stunning that they didn’t know what was in it and voted for it anyway.

    We can argue whether it’s a good law or a bad law, but I expect those who are our representatives to at least look at the bills first instead of taking their marching orders blindly from the party leaders.

  17. I find it so inhumane at its core that repugs would deny lower and middle class subsidies affiliated with ACA but fight tooth to make sure the wealthy keep their subsidies. Wow.

  18. Rethugs make me want to PUKE! CONSTANTLY with EVERYTHING! they believe in!SO,in short, if you watch or listen to FAUX news! please DROP ME AS friend! period if you believe in FAUX BULLSHIT? I want NOTHING TO DO WITH YOU period!!!! NO JOKE GO back to your 12century beliefs and your lies about being a believer of Jesus Christ because you do not believe in the teachings of JESUS! Look how you treat the poor,sick,andhelpless people!In this wonderful world? why? Sickening!so get the hell out of my LIFE! PERIOD! BYE BYE FILTHY PIGS!lying FAUX WATCHING IDIOTS I totally 100% mean THIS!

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