DOJ Informs Supreme Court It Changed Positions on Obamacare

DOJ Informs Supreme Court It Changed Positions on Obamacare

( – It appears the Biden administration is giving the Department of Justice (DOJ) whiplash as the US Supreme Court is considering a case about the Constitutionality of ObamaCare. Since Congress passed the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare) into law in 2010, it has faced numerous challenges, especially related to the individual mandate.

After the law’s passage, the Obama administration told the public the mandate was not a tax. The language in the law supports that position. However, before the Supreme Court in 2012, the Obama administration told the court the government offered constituents a choice: buy health insurance or pay a tax. Based on that presumption, Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the liberal justices and upheld the law.

What Is the Supreme Court Deciding About ObamaCare Now?

In 2017, the Republican-led Congress neutered ObamaCare and reduced the mandate to a $0 tax for not having insurance. It was the most efficient way to end the controversial tax. Immediately after, Texas filed a lawsuit claiming the entire law was unconstitutional because the mandate was the foundation of the legislation. The Trump administration joined in the case.

In November, Texas and the Trump DOJ argued before the nation’s highest court that the law was not Constitutional without the tax.

Biden Department of Justice (DOJ) Responds

However, President Biden’s administration is weighing in with an opposing viewpoint. On Wednesday, February 10, Biden’s DOJ forwarded a letter to the Supreme Court informing the court of the new administration’s position.

It states, in part, that due to the change in administration, the DOJ “has reconsidered the government’s position in these cases.” In essence, they are notifying the Court of their intention to substantially change the basis of their argument because they no longer support “the conclusions in the previously filed brief of the federal respondents.”

What Will the Supreme Court Do?

It’s not known what the Supreme Court will do. It could choose to do nothing and decide a ruling based on the November hearing. Or, the justices could decide to hear the new administration’s viewpoint before ruling.

Many Constitutional law experts doubt the Supreme Court will rule the entire law unconstitutional.

Stay tuned. There will be more on any decision in the days and months ahead.

Don Purdum, Independent Political Analyst

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