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House to Vote on Plan to Defend Affordable Care Act In Court

Credit: Newsy Studio
Published on January 9, 2019 - Duration: 01:21s
But Wednesday's vote is really just a formality.
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House to Vote on Plan to Defend Affordable Care Act In Court

House Democrats are moving forward with their plans to defend the Affordable Care Act in court.

Lawmakers in the lower chamber are scheduled to vote Wednesday  on a resolution  that would give House lawyers the authorization to intervene in an ongoing lawsuit against the health care law.

The move comes after a federal judge in Texas agreed with a group of conservative state attorneys general last month that the ACA is invalid because Congress essentially got rid of the individual mandate penalty as part of its  2017 tax reform bill  by reducing it to zero dollars.

The judge ruled that the individual mandate is "essential to and inseverable from the remainder of the ACA." Though he  stayed his ruling  while an appeal brought by Democratic attorneys general plays out.  Multiple outlets report  Wednesday's vote in the House is more about forcing Republicans to go on the record as either in support of or against defending ACA's protections for people with pre-existing conditions than anything else.

House Democrats technically  already granted themselves  the authority to intervene in the lawsuit as part of a rules package it adopted at the start of the 116th Congress.

And they filed a motion last week asking the court to allow the House counsel to intervene and "defend the validity of the ACA." Additional reporting from  Newsy affiliate CNN .

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