Federal judge rules ACA unconstitutional

Published on December 18, 2018

Updated on January 10, 2019

Contact: Lisa Berry Edwards
(703) 519-2107

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A federal judge ruled last Friday the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is unconstitutional.

Following Congress’ elimination of the tax penalty (the “Individual Mandate”) for those who do not hold a health insurance policy, a group of 20 GOP-led states filed a lawsuit to challenge the ACA. Their argument was that, without the penalty, the other components of the ACA could not be enforced effectively, making the rest of the ACA unconstitutional. U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor agreed, ruling that the other provisions of the ACA could not stand without the Individual Mandate.

Following O’Connor’s ruling, 16 states defending the ACA, led by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, announced they would appeal in the 5th Circuit.

“The court’s decision places millions of Americans at risk of not being able to access the care they need, especially those with pre-existing conditions, like cancer,” said Carolyn Aldigé, Founder and CEO of the Prevent Cancer Foundation®. “With the uncertainty surrounding the future of the ACA, Congress needs to work on bipartisan solutions to ensure patient protections remain in place, regardless of the outcome.”

Despite statements from the White House ensuring the ACA would remain in place pending the appeal from the defendants, the Prevent Cancer Foundation® will continue work with stakeholders to hold Congress and the administration accountable to make sure all patients are covered for the care they need.

Sign up to get the latest about cancer prevention and early detection directly in your inbox.