The California Endowment Files Second Brief in U.S. Supreme Court

Endowment Counsel, Preeminent Supreme Court Litigator Kathleen M. Sullivan Makes Compelling Arguments in Favor of the Constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, The California Endowment, by way of esteemed Supreme Court litigator Kathleen M. Sullivan, filed a 'friend of the court' brief to the United States Supreme Court in strong support of the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act ("ACA"), the new federal health care law. The Supreme Court recently agreed to hear oral arguments in late March 2012 for one of the many federal court challenges to the Affordable Care Act, Department of Health & Human Services v. Florida et al. (No. 11-398).

The California Endowment's amicus brief presents the Court with additional arguments in favor of concluding that the Minimum Coverage Requirement ("MCR") of the ACA is fully within Congress's authority under the Commerce and Necessary and Proper Clauses of the United States Constitution. The brief explains how the MCR has a real and tangible link to interstate commerce, and is a correction to market failure.

The California Endowment's brief highlights new data that shows how nearly 1.4 million Californians will remain uninsured if the Supreme Court determines the MCR unconstitutional.

The California Endowment is a major health foundation in the nation's most populous state with the highest number of uninsured. "Our mission to expand affordable care is in line with the Affordable Care Act and we felt it was imperative to share the tremendous amount of research and data that can help inform the Court in ruling on the constitutionality of the law," said Dr. Robert K. Ross, M.D., president and CEO of The Endowment. "We are excited to share new data that illustrates how the new health law will positively impact the health of communities in our state."

The filing was prepared by The California Endowment counsel Kathleen M. Sullivan, one of the nation's preeminent appellate litigators at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP. 

"In this case the Supreme Court will decide whether Congress had the power to decide that the minimum coverage requirement is essential to reducing the number of the uninsured and reducing spiraling health care costs.  The California Endowment's brief provides powerful empirical evidence from California that strongly supports Congress's authority," said Ms. Sullivan. "With the MCR, the ACA will expand health insurance coverage to nearly two million non-elderly California citizens who are currently uninsured. Without the MCR, 1 million fewer California citizens will obtain health insurance under the ACA. In other words, without the MCR, the ACA will be 54 percent less effective in expanding health insurance to California citizens."

The California Endowment, a private, statewide health foundation, was established in 1996 to expand access to affordable, quality health care for underserved individuals and communities, and to promote fundamental improvements in the health status of all Californians. Headquartered in downtown Los Angeles, The Endowment has regional offices in Sacramento, Oakland, Fresno and San Diego, with program staff working throughout the state. The Endowment challenges the conventional wisdom that medical settings and individual choices are solely responsible for people's health. The Endowment believes that health happens in neighborhoods, schools, and with prevention. For more information, visit The California Endowment's homepage at

SOURCE The California Endowment