20 states file a new lawsuit arguing Obamacare is illegal

Twenty state attorneys general have filed a new lawsuit that — like the many lawsuits before it — aims to take down the Affordable Care Act.

The suit, filed in a Texas district court on Tuesday, makes a new legal argument that relies on Congress’s recent repeal of the individual mandate penalty.

Experts I’ve spoken with don’t see this as an especially strong challenge to Obamacare. But, if you know anything about Obamacare lawsuits, you definitely know that we’ve seen multiple cases initially written off by experts as frivolous eventually reach the Supreme Court (King v. Burwell, anyone?)

Let’s start with the actual argument at play here. This lawsuit starts from Congress’s recent decision to ax Obamacare’s penalty for not carrying health insurance, reducing the fine from $695 to $0 — essentially getting rid of the provision.

In previous rulings, the brief argues, the Supreme Court has stated that this mandate is crucial to making the Affordable Care Act work. The mandate gets healthy people into the insurance market, thus allowing the Affordable Care Act to also require insurers to offer coverage to those with costly pre-existing conditions, too.

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