The new ObamaCare ruling will be overturned and could backfire on Republicans

Obamacare ruled unconstitutional by U.S. federal judge in Texas

Obamacare ruled unconstitutional by U.S. federal judge in Texas

Hospital and health care stocks are being sold in the wake of a federal judge's Friday ruling that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional.

The landmark health care law does remain in effect for now, despite a ruling Friday in Texas that said that its individual coverage mandate is unconstitutional and that the rest of the law therefore can not stand.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said: "We expect this ruling will be appealed to the Supreme Court".

Most legal experts, including conservatives who oppose the mandate, believe the portion of O'Connor's ruling striking down the entire law will be reversed.

A Supreme Court ruling in their favor would be Republicans' only shot at overturning the law in the foreseeable future, with Democrats taking control of the House in January. The court did not issue an injunction, and the Trump administration has asserted that it will continue to enforce the terms of the ACA pending appeal, notwithstanding its vocal opposition to the law.

Trump tweeted again on Monday, saying, "We have a chance, working with the Democrats, to deliver great HealthCare!" All eyes would be on Trump's latest confirmed justice, Brett Kavanaugh, whose opinions about the health care law have been fiercely debated on the right.

One challenge for the GOP is the fact that the politics surrounding the health care law have shifted as parts of the law have proven popular, such as protections for those with pre-existing conditions.

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Without the penalty that Congress eliminated past year, the ACA's individual mandate is "largely toothless" and not essential to the remainder of the law, said Ilya Somin, a law professor at George Mason University in Virginia. The administration's unwillingness to defend the individual mandate in the lawsuit led a number of attorneys general, from states more supportive of the ACA, to intervene. Republicans, including President Donald Trump, have long criticized the law, calling it a costly and unneeded government intrusion into Americans' lives. The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the ACA in 2012 because it included an individual mandate - or a tax penalty for Americans who did not buy health insurance.

Supporters of the law immediately said they would appeal.

"In the interim, it provides Congress with a real opportunity recognizing that Obamacare is on life support to pull together and make a determination of the things that we need to do to provide sufficient healthcare for all Americans including pre-existing conditions", he said, after show host Steve Doocy complained his own daughter has deductibles on her own Obamacare plan that are too hard to meet.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra in a statement said the Democrats would appeal Friday's decision. As a Wall Street Journal editorial noted Monday, Roberts saved the law in 2012 by describing the mandate penalty as a tax - something Congress has unquestioned authority to impose.

Last year, Republicans - while attempting to repeal ObamaCare - ended up getting rid of the penalty.

The healthcare industry has long awaited a decision in Texas v. Azar, since the US District Court for the Northern District of Texas heard arguments this past September.

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