By Christine Mai-Duc, Los Angeles Times (TNS)
House Republicans have filed a lawsuit against President Obama over his health care law, Speaker John Boehner announced Friday, making good on a resolution passed in July.
The lawsuit is the first legal challenge of its kind by a chamber of Congress and came one day after the president’s announcement that he was using executive authority to institute immigration reform. Republicans have discussed whether to expand their health care lawsuit to include the immigration actions.
In the statement announcing the lawsuit, Boehner said: “Time after time, the president has chosen to ignore the will of the American people and re-write federal law on his own without a vote of Congress. That’s not the way our system of government was designed to work.”
Republicans have taken issue with Obama’s failure to enforce a provision of the 2010 Affordable Care Act, which requires businesses to pay a penalty if they don’t offer basic health insurance to employees. The Obama administration has delayed the provision twice, and it won’t fully take effect until 2016.
Boehner said the lawsuit also will address Republican opposition to an estimated $175 billion in payments to insurance companies over the next 10 years as part of a cost-sharing program under the health care law.
“Congress has never appropriated funds for the program,” Boehner said in a statement Friday. “The administration is instead unlawfully and unconstitutionally using funds from a separate Treasury Department account … and thereby unilaterally altering the structure of the health care law.”
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