Attorney General Pam Bondi News Release
March 22, 2011
Contact: Whitney Ray
Phone: (850) 245-0150
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March 23 Marks One-Year Anniversary of the Historic Legal Fight Against Federal Health Care Law

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Tomorrow, March 23, 2011, marks the one-year anniversary of the filing of the lawsuit by Florida and numerous other states challenging the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). The lawsuit has been successful thus far, with a federal district judge ruling that PPACA’s individual insurance mandate is unconstitutional and striking down the Act in its entirety. The case is currently pending on appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, which has ordered an expedited briefing schedule.

“This case is about protecting individual liberty and preserving the Constitution’s limits on federal power,” said Attorney General Bondi. “With the expedited appeal schedule granted by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, we hope to have this issue before the U.S. Supreme Court as soon as possible.”

What began as a small group of states challenging the PPACA has grown to include 26 states and the National Federation of Independent Business. The battle started with Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum sending a letter and legal analysis in January 2010 to then-U.S. Speaker Nancy Pelosi and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid warning of the unconstitutionality of the Senate-passed health care bill.

After the bill was passed and signed, Florida, along with 12 other states, filed the lawsuit in federal court. On May 14, Florida, along with 19 other states and NFIB, filed an amended complaint challenging the individual mandate and provisions that intruded on state sovereignty. Since then, six more states have joined the lawsuit.

Judge Roger Vinson issued an order for summary judgment in January 2011, holding that the individual mandate is unconstitutional and that the provision is not severable from the remainder of the Act. In light of that ruling, Judge Vinson struck down PPACA in its entirety. The judge has stayed his order invalidating PPACA pending appeal.