Judge lets states’ healthcare suit go forward

(Reuters) – U.S. states can proceed with a lawsuit seeking to overturn President Barack Obama’s landmark healthcare reform law, a Florida judge ruled Thursday.

U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson had said at a hearing last month that he would block efforts by the Justice Department to dismiss the lawsuit, led by Florida and 19 other states.

“In this order, I have not attempted to determine whether the line between constitutional and extraconstitutional government has been crossed,” Vinson, of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida, wrote in his ruling.

“I am only saying that … the plaintiffs have at least stated a plausible claim that the line has been crossed,” Vinson said.

Opponents of Obama’s overhaul of the $2.5 trillion U.S. healthcare system have said it violates the Constitution by imposing what they consider unlawful taxes and requiring citizens to obtain healthcare coverage, among other issues.

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