FORT WORTH, Texas - The fight over Obamacare has come to Fort Worth.
State Attorney General Ken Paxton is leading the charge for 20 states that want a federal judge to declare the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional.
Paxton didn’t comment after the hearing, but they were clear in court. They’re asking a U.S. district court judge in Fort Worth to end the Affordable Care Act because they say it’s unconstitutional. Nineteen other states and other plaintiffs have joined Texas.
“We want the court to issue a ruling in the injunction immediately so Texas can get to work in crafting new state regulations and provide more choice and competition,” said Robert Henneke with the Texas Public Policy Foundation.
The state attorney general’s legal team argued that once Congress ended the penalty on Obamacare as part of its tax overhaul, the Affordable Care Act became unconstitutional. There is a question of timing on when and how the court rules.
“The federal government’s position was — given that open enrollment is about to occur at the end of this year — they’re position is it would be confusing for the court to enter now. Wanted court to defer a ruling until the beginning of next year,” Henneke said.
The California attorney general has intervened in this case saying millions of Americans would lose affordable health care if the judge strikes down Obamacare.
“California lead state coalition,” Henneke said. “Their position is ‘Don’t do anything. Deny it all.’”
Attorneys expect they will be filing or fighting an appeal depending on the judge’s ruling.