Judge denies Obama administration request in House Obamacare case

Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) stands next to a printed version of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, during a news conference on Capitol Hill May 16, 2013 in Washington, DC.

Story highlights

  • A federal judge denied a request by the Obama administration to immediately appeal whether the House of Representatives has the legal right to challenge a provision of the Affordable Care Act
  • Judge Rosemary Collyer set a briefing schedule with oral arguments occurring sometime after January 18, 2016

Washington (CNN)In a significant win for House Speaker John Boehner and congressional Republicans, a federal judge Monday denied a request by the Obama administration to immediately appeal whether the House of Representatives has the legal right to challenge a provision of the Affordable Care Act.

U.S. District Court Judge Rosemary Collyer ruled last month that one part of the challenge could go forward because the House had shown it had the standing necessary to bring the case. Lawyers for the Obama administration -- concerned by what they called an unprecedented ruling on the threshold issue of standing -- sought to appeal Collyer's ruling before her court heard arguments on the underlying merits of the case.
Monday, Collyer said the Obama administration will have to wait. She set a briefing schedule with oral arguments occurring sometime after January 18, 2016.
"Suffice it to say, the Court is not convinced it erred," Collyer wrote. "Defendants will have a chance to make their argument to the Court of Appeals; the only question is whether they may do so now."
At issue in the case is the so-called "cost sharing" provisions that require insurance companies offering health plans through the law to reduce the out-of-pocket costs for policy holders who qualify. The government offsets the added costs to insurance companies by reimbursing them, but the lawmakers say that Congress did not properly approve the money for those reimbursements.
"I'm pleased with today's ruling," Boehner said in a statement. "The court has previously ruled that the House does, in fact, have standing to challenge one of the president's unilateral actions with regard to Obamacare... It's another important step toward holding the president accountable for his unconstitutional actions."