Wednesday, December 1st, 2010 - 14:53
Wednesday, December 1, 2010 - 14:38
A federal judge in Virginia becomes the second judge in two months to uphold the constitutionality of the health reform law.
A federal judge in Virginia has dismissed a challenge to the health reform law lodged by Liberty University, becoming the second judge in two months to uphold the constitutionality of the law, according to The New York Times. Both the Virginia judge, Norman K. Moon, and George Steeh in Detroit were appointed by Bill Clinton.
Two other judges hearing challenges to the individual mandate requiring individuals to purchase health insurance are expected to make their own rulings soon. Henry Hudson, in Richmond, Va., and Roger Vinson, in Pensacola, Fla., appear to be skeptical of the government's claim that the insurance mandate falls under the federal powers of interstate commerce. Both were appointed by Republican presidents.
Experts believe the health law will undoubtedly end up before the U.S. Supreme Court. The mandate is a key part of health reform because it will expand the insurance pools of insurers who, starting in 2014, will no longer be able to deny coverage based on pre-existing conditions. Without the addition in customers, many experts believe health reform will become unworkable because too many healthy people will not choose to get coverage.
In other news, Politico reports that incoming House Speaker John Boehner is meeting today with 15 new Republican governors to coordinate a state-level strategy to disrupt President Obama's agenda, including health reform. Partners would include Rick Scott, the governor-elect in Florida who helped fund anti-health reform efforts in the summer of 2009, and John Kasich, who will become governor in January in Boehner's home state of Ohio. The development seems to further suggest that much of the effort to derail health reform will take place in the states.