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Hotze v. Sebelius

  News:    Fifth Circuit orders dismissal for lack of jurisdiction (April 24, 2015)

A Texas physician, Steven Hotze, and his company have challenged the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act ("ObamaCare"). Because their lawsuit raises constitutional defects with ObamaCare that neither the Supreme Court nor the parties addressed in National Federal of Independent Business v. Sebelius ("NFIB"), the plaintiffs contend that the NFIB decision did not resolve their claims:

"Questions which merely lurk in the record, neither brought to the attention of the court nor ruled upon, are not to be considered as having been so decided as to constitute precedents."

Cooper Indus., Inc. v. Aviall Serv., Inc., 543 U.S. 157, 170 (2004) (quoting Webster v. Fall, 266 U.S. 507, 511 (1925)); Waters v. Churchill, 511 U.S. 661, 678 (1994) (“cases cannot be read as foreclosing an argument that they never dealt with”). The plaintiffs' additional arguments relate to the constititional requirements for taxation (e.g., the Fifth Amendment, the Orgination Clause, and the requirement for national uniformity in excise taxation), now that the Supreme Court has held that Congress lacks authority to impose ObamaCare under any enumerated power other than the power to tax. This page deals only with the issues that arise under the Origination Clause.

Hotze v. Sebelius, No. 4:13-cv-01318 (S.D. Tex)

  • 2013-05-07    Complaint
  • 2013-08-06    HHS motion to dismiss
  • 2013-08-27    Hotze opposition to motion to dismiss
  • 2013-09-24    HHS reply in support of motion to dismiss
  • 2014-01-10    District Court decision

Hotze v. Sebelius, No. 14-20039 (5th Cir.)

  • 2014-01-17    Fifth Circuit docketing letter
  • 2014-01-29    Record on Appeal:
  • 2014-02-10    Briefing schedule
  • 2014-05-08    Hotze opening brief and record excerpts
  • 2014-05-14    Amicus brief of Foundation for Moral Law
  • 2014-05-14    Amici brief of Rep. Trent Franks et al.
  • 2014-05-15    Amici brief of Council for Health Freedom et al.
  • 2014-05-15    Amicus brief of Association of American Physicians & Surgeons
  • 2014-05-15    Amici brief of House Majority Leader et al.
  • 2014-05-15    Amici brief and addendum of Sen. John Cornyn et al.
  • 2014-05-15    Amici brief of Texas and 19 other States
  • 2014-07-10    HHS response brief
  • 2014-07-17    Amici brief of Rep. Levin and Sen. Wyden in support of HHS
  • 2014-07-28    Hotze reply brief
  • 2014-07-29    HHS notice of supplemental authority on D.C. Circuit's Sissel decision
  • 2014-08-01    Hotze notice of supplemental authority on D.C. Circuit's Sissel decision
  • 2015-04-24    Fifth Circuit decision dismissing for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction

Source Materials

  • Service Members Home Ownership Tax Act of 2009, H.R. 3590, 111th Cong., 1st Sess. (Oct. 8, 2009)
  • S. Rep. No. 42-146 (1872) (Senate report interpreting Origination Clause)
  • Congressional Research Serv., The Origination Clause of the U.S. Constitution: Interpretation and Enforcement (Mar. 15, 2011) (CRS report on Origination Clause)
  • 2 Hinds’ Precedents of the House of Representatives of the United States §1489 (1907)
  • H. Res. 153, 113th Cong., 1st Sess. (Apr. 12, 2013) (referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means)