Atlanta Court a Health Care Battleground
(AJC) — In a key test of President Barack Obama’s health care law, the federal appeals court in Atlanta today will hear arguments on whether the government can require Americans to buy health insurance. The cornerstone of the law — the requirement that almost all Americans purchase a minimum level of insurance by 2014 or face a tax penalty — is at the heart of a lawsuit filed by Georgia and 25 other states. They contend Congress cannot mandate that individuals have coverage in the interest of controlling health-care costs; allowing that, they say, could conceivably lead to extreme results, such as laws requiring people to eat more vegetables and exercise more. The Obama administration counters that everyone will need medical care sooner or later, and it is unacceptable for those without coverage to have fellow taxpayers pay for their care when the time comes.