The long-disputed fate of the Affordable Care Act played out anew in a Fort Worth courtroom Wednesday as a score of Republican-led states sought to persuade a federal judge to halt the sprawling health-care law.
In the latest legal threat to the 2010 law, the coalition of GOP attorney’s general and a pair of governors argued that a recent change in federal tax policy has made the ACA unconstitutional. For the short-term, they asked a federal judge to grant a preliminary injunction that would suspend the law while the rest of the case unfolds — a possibility that could throw significant aspects of the U.S. health-care system into chaos.
U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor, a conservative jurist appointed by President George W. Bush, did not immediately rule on the request or indicate when he would do so. He asked more frequent and pointed questions of the parties arguing in favor of the ACA, while asking the opponents mainly about the impact of a preliminary injunction or an outright ruling against the law.
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