Diagnosing the Constitutionality of Federal Health Care Reform

On March 3, 2010, Virginia Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli filed a lawsuit against U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius on behalf of his state alleging that federal health care reform—the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act—was unconstitutional. The lawsuit brought the debate about the roles state and federal governments should play in national health care reform front and center.

To date, 20 more states are challenging the law’s requirement that individuals must carry health insurance or face a penalty. The Virginia case is currently being heard in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Virginia, but many legal experts agree that the case will eventually make its way through the Circiut Court of Appeals and to the Supreme Court.

On Saturday, Dec. 4, 8-9:30 a.m., CSG will present a lively debate at the Rhode Island Convention Center featuring constitutional scholars Gillian Metzger, Columbia Law School and Ilya Shapiro, the Cato Institute.  Metzger and Shapiro will debate the constitutionality of federal health care reform and explore the impact of the recently filed Virginia v. Sebelius. The session will be part of the CSG 2010 National Conference hosted in Providence, RI.