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Texas Attorney General’s Office Files Brief in U.S. Supreme Court Challenging Constitutionality of Obamacare

AUSTIN – The Texas Attorney General’s office today filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court that asserts Obamacare was not enacted in compliance with the Origination Clause of the U.S. Constitution. The amicus brief was filed in support of the certiorari petition in Matt Sissel v. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Obamacare has been fundamentally flawed from the day it was forced through Congress,” Attorney General Ken Paxton said. “The Constitution requires that any bill which imposes new taxes must originate in the U.S. House. Based on the Supreme Court’s own 2012 ruling, Obamacare is a tax on the American people, and since Congress did not follow proper procedure, the law should be struck down in full. I am hopeful that once and for all the Supreme Court will free the American people of the burdens of this unconstitutionally enacted law.”

The Origination Clause was crucial to the compromises reached at the Constitutional Convention, and remains to this day an important structural feature of the Constitution. In particular, it enables the House to serve as an adequate counterweight to the Senate, and it ensures that taxes are originated by the chamber that is most accountable to the people.

Under the Supreme Court’s decision in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, the Obamacare individual mandate could only have been passed as a tax. There is no precedent suggesting that a bill that could only have been passed as a tax is nevertheless exempt from the Origination Clause.

This brief is supported by Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, South Carolina and West Virginia. To view the amicus brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court, please visit: https://www.texasattorneygeneral.gov/files/epress/files/2015/January/15-543_-_Sissel_Amicus_Brief_Final.pdf