News Releases

AG Schmidt statement on today’s conflicting employer mandate rulings

TOPEKA – (July 22, 2014) – Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt issued the following statement on two federal appeals court rulings today on the “Obamacare” employer mandate:

“Today’s rulings move this important legal dispute one step closer to final resolution. Our interest is to ensure the IRS follows the law and Kansas obtains the benefit it anticipated when state policy makers chose not to establish a state-run health insurance exchange. Congress might not have expected so many states to decline to establish an exchange under the Affordable Care Act, but that misjudgment cannot justify allowing the IRS to effectively rewrite the statute to satisfy policy and political objectives. We will continue to represent the state’s interest as this litigation proceeds to its next stage, perhaps ultimately to the U.S. Supreme Court.”

In Halbig v. Burwell, No. 14-5018, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit struck down the IRS rules implementing the federal subsidies and employer mandate in states that opted not to set up a state-based exchange. In King v. Burwell, No. 14-1158, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upheld the same IRS rules.

Attorney General Schmidt led briefs in support of the plaintiffs in both cases in February. The plaintiffs in the Halbig case included Community National Bank, based in Seneca.