October 5th, 2012

Evidence we can expect longer lines under Obamacare

The state of New York is looking to hear from the Obama Administration how it plans to allow New York to limit the number of times you can see your doctor. Read more »

September 20th

Judge dismisses parts of “Death Panel” case—asks plaintiffs to submit new brief after NFIB v. Sebelius

Attribution: Army Medicine

Nearly three weeks ago, in Coons v. Geithner, a federal judge dismissed parts of a challenge to Obamacare’s “death panel” officially known as the “Independent Payment Advisory Board” (IPAB). Read more »

September 6th

Maine suing Obamacare earlier than normally expected

(Source: Office of Governor Paul LePage)

Much sooner than normally expected, the state of Maine has asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit to force the Obama Administration to allow Maine to reduce the amount it spends on Medicaid in a way that violates Obamacare. Read more »

September 4th

Obamacare bans new physician-owned hospitals

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius(HHS/Chris Smith)

In 2010, Obamacare limited the expansion of physician-owned hospitals (POHs) and banned the establishment of new ones. By the end of 2010, Obamacare forced up to 84 new POHs in various stages of development to be abandoned. These hospitals would have provided nearly 30,000 jobs. Read more »

August 24th

Obamacare Pays for Lottery Tickets

When Nancy Pelosi said we'd have to pass Obamacare before we'd find out what's in it, no one expected to find that Obamacare funds would be used to purchase lottery tickets. But that's exactly what the state of New York plans to do with part of the grant money it will receive under Obamacare's Medicaid Incentives for the Prevention of Chronic Diseases program. Read more »

August 21st

Start over says U.S. Court of Appeals to physician-owned hospitals seeking relief from Obamacare

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. By Bobak Ha'Eri (Own work) [CC-BY-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

This past weekend PoliticoPro reported that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, in Physician Hospitals of America v. Sebelius, upheld Obamacare’s stifling limits on physician-owned hospitals. A closer look at the case shows this report to be inaccurate.

On March 31, 2011, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas ruled that Section 6001 of Obamacare, which bans new physician-owned hospitals and places severe restrictions on expansions of such hospitals, was constitutional as applied to the plaintiffs of the case: Physician Hospitals of America and Texas Spine & Joint Hospital (TSJH).

Contrary to the PoliticoPro report, the Fifth Circuit did not uphold the district court’s decision, but vacated it. Furthermore, the Fifth Circuit did not even discuss the merits of the district court’s holding that Section 6001 of Obamacare is constitutional. Instead, the Fifth Circuit ruled that, under the facts of this case, federal courts do not have jurisdiction to decide the matter. Read more »

August 2nd

Maine’s shot across Obamacare’s bow

Maine Governor Paul LePage (photo by Jim Bodoin)

The state of Maine on August 1, 2012, sent a shot across the bow of Obamacare in the form of a letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), Kathleen Sebelius. The letter requests a reduction to Maine’s Medicaid eligibility threshold by September 1, 2012 and threatens to sue if the Obama Administration does not agree to the changes. The letter, written by Maine Governor Paul LePage asserts Maine’s right not to be coerced by the federal government—a right confirmed by the Supreme Court’s Obamacare decision, NFIB v. Sebelius, not quite two months ago. Read more »

July 31st

Michigan HHS mandate plaintiff brings court's attention to injunction granted in Colorado Federal Court

Yesterday, plaintiffs against a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) mandate sent a letter to the United States District Court of the Eastern District of Michigan. The letter brought to the court's attention the injunction a federal district court in Colorado granted in the case of Newland v. Sebelius on Friday. Read more »

July 30th

Federal judge in Colorado issues first injunction against HHS Mandate; Expect more to come

Hercules Industries leadership: (L to R) James (Jim) Newland, Andrew (Andy) Newland, Paul Newland, William (Bill) Newland

A federal district court in Colorado granted a preliminary injunction against a controversial Obamacare regulation on July 27, 2012.

This is no small matter. Courts only grant injunctions under extraordinary circumstances. Plaintiffs seeking an injunction must meet a very difficult standard. Not only must they show that they will suffer irreparable harm without the injunction, they must also prove that they likely to win their case. Therefore, when a federal court grants an injunction, it is making a preliminary assessment that the law is on the side of the plaintiffs. Read more »

July 26th

Time for a Constitutional Moment

Image: Some rights reserved by Vectorportal

Following Chief Justice Roberts’ decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate as a “tax,” there are 23 cases left challenging another mandate from the ACA, which has been dubbed the Health & Human Services (HHS) mandate. The HHS mandate’s constitutionality is being challenged, not under the limitations imposed on Congress by the Commerce Clause, but by the First Amendment’s assertion of each citizen’s right to religious freedom. The plaintiffs challenge a regulation that requires “certain preventive services” to be provided by employers. According to Secretary Sebelius, these “preventive services” include contraceptives and abortifacients, but the “exemption” for religious employers applies much too narrowly. Read more »