Supreme Court to hear health care reform challenge

The Supreme Court will hear a challenge to the Affordable Care Act. Several states have been involved in a variety of different challenges to the law, and so far, appeals courts have been split on their assessments creating a need for a final ruling from the Court. The move is likely to create electoral challenges for the White House which bills health care as one of its primary domestic policy achievements.

Observers of the court are calling the challenge ruling the most significant since Bush v. Gore. The Court is expected to start hearing arguments in March and has indicated it will rule squarely in the middle of the presidential election cycle next year.

Florida, 25 other states, and the National Federation of Independent Business are all named in this challenge. The group is asserting that the federal government exceeded its constitutional authority by requiring individuals to maintain health insurance or face a penalty.

Appeals courts have been mixed in their rulings on the issue. Most courts have opted to uphold the law, however, the 11th circuit court in Atlanta sided with the challengers. The Supreme Court ruling would serve as the final resolution to conflicting assessments of the law. They will only be hearing appeals associated with the 11th circuit court ruling.

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