Supreme Court to hear Obamacare case in 2020: Everything you should know

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When is SCOTUS going to rule on Obamacare? And 6 other questions, answered.
Obamacare is going back to the Supreme Court.

The justices announced on Monday that they would hear the ongoing lawsuit to overturn the health care law. Vox's Ian Millhiser went deep on the case and the background. This is the third, and presumably last, in a trilogy of cases that have threatened the law's future since President Obama signed it in 2010.

But if you need a bite-size explanation (or want an easy link to explain the case to friends who are wondering), let's run through the big questions here.

1) What is this lawsuit about?

In 2017, Republicans in Congress passed their tax bill and President Trump signed it into law. That law, among its many changes to the US tax code, repealed Obamacare's financial penalty for failing to carry health insurance. But it did not repeal the mandate itself. The requirement that all Americans have health insurance is still technically on the books; there is just no penalty for failing to meet it.

A group of Republican state officials, led by Texas, used this legal limbo to challenge Obamacare's constitutionality. They have since been joined by the Trump administration. Their argument goes something like this:

Chief Justice John Roberts upheld Obamacare in 2012 by ruling that the individual mandate was a permissible use of Congress's taxation power.

After the GOP tax bill became law, there is no longer a "tax" for failing to satisfy the individual mandate, and so that rationale no longer holds up.

The individual mandate must therefore be found unconstitutional.

And because the mandate is so intrinsically important to Obamacare overall, if the mandate is unconstitutional, then so must be the entire law.

Democratic-led states and many legal experts disagree. First, they don't think anybody should be able to sue at all. Who is being harmed by ... not being fined because they don't have insurance? Where is the legal standing to bring the lawsuit in the first place?

But they also reason that because Congress chose to…
Dylan Scott
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