PENSACOLA, Fla. (WTAQ) - A federal judge in Florida has ruled that President Obama's healthcare reform law is unconstitutional.
Judge Roger Vinson took exception to the law's "individual mandate," which requires Americans to buy health insurance.
He refused to impose an injunction against the law. 26 states, including Wisconsin, have joined in a challenge against the healthcare law.
Vinson ruled, "because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void."
Judge Vinson added, "this has been a difficult decision to reach, and I am aware that it will have indeterminable implications."
Judge Vinson was appointed to the bench by President Ronald Reagan in 1983.
The plaintiffs in the case represented more that two-dozen states.
Last month, a federal court judge in Richmond, Virginia, struck down the provision in the law requiring Americans to start buying health insurance in 2014 or pay a penalty, saying it invited an "unbridled exercise of federal police powers."
In a statment, Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen said:
"Judge Vinson has confirmed the conclusion I reached when this law was enacted. Congress is free to reform health care, but it must do so in a Constitutional manner. It simply does not have the authority to require people to either purchase health insurance or pay a fine.
Now, we wait to see if the federal government has finally gotten the message. If they don’t get the message, and decide to appeal the case, as they did when they lost in Virginia, my colleagues and I will continue our fight to defend the Constitution and protect the people of Wisconsin from this unconstitutional law."