Obamacare's Problem with the Origination Clause

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However compelling the argument on the merits of whether the ACA violates the Origination Clause of Article 7, section 1, though, the court must first decide whether to take up the case on certiorari. Here, there are two problems, realistically speaking. One is that there is no clear and present split in the circuits on this question, as the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit dismissed this claim for want of standing, and the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit's panel held that the overriding purpose of the law was not to raise revenue but rather to provide health insurance. Even though four judges of the DC Circuit, in dissenting from the denial for a rehearing en blanc, would have preferred a different rationale for ruling against the challenge, namely that the Senate can amend revenue bills originating in the House, no judge was saying that Obamacare violated the Origination Clause.


Originally published by Jurist-Academic in 2015.