Monday, November 30, 2020
John Aloysius Cogan Jr. (University of Connecticut), Congress Has Already Ruled in California v. Texas, 62 Boston College L. Rev. E. Supp. (2020):
In California v. Texas, opponents of the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) have asked the Supreme Court to invalidate the statute. Relying on a 2017 legislative change to the ACA’s individual mandate, the challengers argue that the mandate is unconstitutional. They then assert that the mandate is inseverable from the rest of the ACA, thus the entire statute must fall. Earlier this year, however, Congress said otherwise. Last March, Congress passed the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act and the CARES Act. The two statutes amended and expanded provisions of the ACA, thereby overriding Texas v U.S., the district court decision that underlies California. In short, Congress has already ruled, via an override, on the severability question at issue in California. The ACA stands, even with an unconstitutional individual mandate.