Judge: Governor premature in bringing health care reform lawsuit
Published: September 17,2012
JACKSON — Gov. Phil Bryant and other Mississippi residents were premature in their challenge to the federal law requiring people to buy health care insurance, a federal judge has ruled.
District Judge Keith Starrett also knocked the governor and another man out as plaintiffs, The Hattiesburg American reported. Both have health insurance, and wouldn’t be affected by the law unless they dropped that insurance.
In an order signed Aug. 23, he said two remaining plaintiffs’ privacy claims would have to be brought later, because rules involving disclosure and protection of personal information are still being worked out.
“Therefore, plaintiffs’ privacy claims are not ripe for judicial resolution,” he wrote.
Mississippi Sen. Chris McDaniel, R-Ellisville, is an attorney for the plaintiffs. They either will appeal Starrett’s ruling or refile the suit later, he said.
“Either way, we are going to keep fighting,” he said.
Bryant and 10 others sued in April 2010, broadly challenging the constitutional merits of the law, which imposes tax penalties on people without health insurance beginning in 2014.
Earlier rulings dismissed seven plaintiffs for failing to comply with discovery orders.
Starrett’s August opinion further dismisses without prejudice Bryant and another of the remaining plaintiffs for lack of standing.
McDaniel has said the part of the lawsuit remaining in litigation evokes the right to medical privacy established by the 1973 Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade, which decided medical privacy extended to a woman’s right to have an abortion.
He said the federal government forcing Americans to disclose medical information to an insurer — or a private third party — would violate the rights to medical privacy supported by decades of court rulings.
To sign up for Mississippi Business Daily Updates, click here.
FOLLOW THE MBJ ON TWITTERMy Tweets
Top Posts & Pages
- UMMC reaching out after death of high school football player
- Former Godwin CEO Danny Mitchell dies at 66
- Northrop Grumman lands $354M Air Force contract for Global Hawks
- MDOT: Work on I-269 is on schedule, several phases at halfway point
- Thousands of acres of Delta farmland to go on auction block
- More school districts join MAEP lawsuit brought by Musgrove
- S&P: State in top 10 in U.S. in sales tax dependency
- Court tosses challenge to Miss. Silicon’s clean air permit
- Biloxi baseball project still alive but may be held for 2015