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Monday, July 21, 2014

 5:03 PM 

Johnson Obamacare suit dismissed

A federal judge today dismissed U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson's suit over an Obama administration ruling on the Affordable Care Act, finding he had failed to demonstrate any true harm he faced from the decision.

Johnson, R-Oshkosh, challenged the administration's ruling allowing the federal government to subsidize health insurance for lawmakers and some congressional staffers.

Johnson argued the ruling hurts his reputation with his constituents by requiring him to participate in an "illegal" scheme, imposes an administrative burden on him and his staff in determining which of his employees are eligible for the subsidy, and the rule means he is treated differently from his constituents.

Judge William Griesbach ruled Johnson and his aide lacked standing to file the suit, finding much of the injuries the lawmaker claimed were speculative. The judge also rejected Johnson's argument that he was being required to participate in something he found illegal. Griesbach noted no court had yet found the administration's rule illegal and the provision does not require any member of Congress to act.

Simply believing the provision is illegal was not "enough to create standing because that would open the door to any uninjured party who had a generalized grievance with a government regulation. Under such an approach, there would be no principled limit on standing because a plaintiff need only allege a belief that the challenged regulation is illegal," the judge wrote.

Johnson says he and his legal team will review a court decision rejecting his Obamacare suit before deciding whether to appeal.

“We’ve lost a battle in court, but we will continue to move forward in our effort to return sanity, fairness and justice to government on behalf of the American people,” he said.


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