The Supreme Court announced today that it will not hear Sissel v. U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Pacific Legal Foundation’s constitutional challenge to the Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”). PLF’s case targeted the individual mandate tax specifically, but called for Obamacare to be struck down in its entirety, because it is a massive tax-raising bill that began in the Senate instead of the House, as the Constitution requires.
“It is very disappointing that the Court has chosen not to hear this important case, because the justices were being asked to uphold and enforce an important constitutional protection for all taxpayers,” said PLF Principal Attorney Timothy Sandefur. “At issue was the Constitution’s Origination Clause, which requires all new taxes to start in the House, the chamber closest to the people. Obamacare is a massive tax bill, but it was launched in the Senate through a procedural ploy. The Senate’s subversion of the constitutionally mandated rules for tax bills is a danger not just in this case but in future cases as well. By allowing Congress to use procedural tricks to evade the constitutional rules, the Court has opened the door to Congress further evading democratic accountability for the laws it passes.”