AFL Takes On Obamacare In Federal Court, Joins As Co-Counsel in Lawsuit Challenging Section 2713 of the Affordable Care Act

Friday, June 25, 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. — America First Legal has joined a lawsuit challenging a key provision of the Affordable Care Act, also known as “Obamacare.”  The lawsuit seeks to enjoin the continued enforcement of section 2713 of the Affordable Care Act, which forces private insurers to cover “preventive care” without any cost-sharing arrangements such as copays or deductibles.

Section 2713 of the ACA empowers the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, and the Health Resources and Services Administration to unilaterally dictate the “preventive care” that all private health insurance must cover. In recent years, these entities have compelled private insurers to provide coverage that many individuals do not want or need, forcing these individuals to pay higher premiums for coverage that they will never use. For example, the Health Resources and Services Administration has decreed that private insurance must cover all forms of FDA-approved contraceptives, including those that act as abortifacients, even though millions of Americans have no desire or need for contraceptive coverage. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force is also demanding that private insurers cover expensive HIV-prevention drugs such as Truvada and Desovy, even though the vast majority of Americans have no need for these drugs because they do not engage in the irresponsible behavior that transmits HIV. 

None of the officials charged with making these crucially important decisions were nominated by the President or confirmed by the Senate, as the Appointments Clause requires. AFL is joining this lawsuit to enforce the commands of the Appointments Clause and prevent unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats from overriding the market and dictating the coverage in Americans’ health insurance plans. 

AFL Vice-President and General Counsel Gene Hamilton issued the following statement: 

The Constitution requires the proper appointment of government officials who exercise significant power and exert unilateral control over portions of Americans’ health insurance plans. None of the government officials here were confirmed by the Senate after nomination by the President. Instead, the ACA created powerful bodies that make important decisions about healthcare coverage in the United States, but lack any accountability. AFL is proud to join the fight to stop the continued enforcement of this unconstitutional regime.” 

Read the amended complaint, filed before AFL’s involvement in the case, for more information.

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