The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that the Republican Lt. Governor has no legal standing to file suit because the Affordable Care Act poses no immediate threat to Kinder’s legally protected interests. He filed suit two years ago as an individual, not in his official capacity as Lt. Governor. The three-judge panel’s ruling did not address the constitutionality of the federal health care law, most of which was upheld last year in a 5-4 ruling by the U-S Supreme Court.
A federal judge in St. Louis has dismissed a lawsuit challenging the contraception mandate of the federal health care law.
The lawsuit filed on behalf of Frank O'Brien and his company, O'Brien Industrial Holdings LLC of St. Louis, was one of nearly three dozen cases nationally challenging the constitutionality of regulations in the health care law. Among other things, O'Brien, a devout Catholic, claimed the requirement to pay for birth control infringes on his religious beliefs.
Illinois has chosen a Blue Cross Blue Shield small group policy as the benchmark plan for essential health benefits in the state, another milestone in implementing President Barack Obama's health care law.
Friday's decision comes from Gov. Pat Quinn's health care council. It will determine the cost of future premiums and how broad coverage will be for many patients. Policies sold in Illinois must match the actuarial value of the benchmark plan.
Richard Freese sits in the waiting room of Family Care Health Centers in St. Louis. Freese is self-employed, servicing and selling industrial machines. But he says if he wound up hospitalized, he’d have no income – and no way to pay his bills.
When the US Supreme Court upheld the federal health care law in June, it ruled that states couldn’t be penalized for failing to expand their Medicaid programs.
After the ruling, Missouri was one of a number of states that seemed ready to opt out of Medicaid expansion. Many in the Republican-led state legislature say expanding insurance coverage for low-income Missourians would cost too much.
But as St. Louis Public Radio’s Véronique LaCapra reports, without Medicaid expansion, Missouri’s working poor could be among those paying the biggest price.
Updated 4:15 p.m. Thursday: Carnahan will not appeal Judge Green's new language, saying Attorney General Chris Koster refused a request for further legal action, and the Secretary of State's office is not in a position to appeal on its own. A full version of today's developments can be found here.
Proposition E centers on the conditions for creating a health care exchange in Missouri; the language authorized by Carnahan read in part whether the law should “deny individuals, families and small businesses the ability to access affordable health care.” Lt. Governor Peter Kinder (R) called the language used by the Secretary of State unbelievably biased.