The Hill –
A pair of federal appeals courts delivered conflicting rulings Tuesday on ObamaCare, putting the law’s premium subsidies at risk in more than two dozen states.
In the first decision, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals said in a 2-1 decision that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) does not permit the IRS to distribute premium subsidies in the federal ObamaCare exchange, meaning those consumers must bear the full cost of their insurance.
“Because we conclude that the ACA unambiguously restricts the section 36B subsidy to insurance purchased on Exchanges ‘established by the State,’ we reverse the district court and vacate the IRS’s regulation,” the court said in its ruling.
Hours later, a separate appeals court came to a far different conclusion in King v. Burwell, ruling that the IRS had the discretion to issue subsidies given “ambiguity” in the language of the law.
“It is … entirely sensible that the IRS would enact the regulations it did,” Judge Roger Gregory wrote.
“We are satisfied that the IRS rule is a permissible construction of the statutory language.”
The contradictory rulings could fast-track the case to the Supreme Court, setting up a major legal showdown that conservatives believe could deal a fatal blow to President Obama’s healthcare law.