Max 01

Health Care Law Timeline

  • President Obama elected

    President Obama elected
  • Obama inaugurated

    Obama inaugurated
  • Health Care Forums

    Obama holds first health care forum at White House.
  • Health insurers address pre-existing conditions

    The nation’s health insurers say they would be willing to cover people with pre-existing conditions if everyone was required to get insurance.
  • Town Hall Meeting Protests

    Obama and members of Congress holding town hall meetings encounter constituents angry about proposed health care changes. Tea Party activists hold protests in several states.
  • Sen. Ted Kennedy dies

    Sen. Ted Kennedy dies
    Democratic Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, a longtime champion of national health insurance, dies.
  • "The time for bickering is over." — Pres. Obama

    Obama urges action on health care in address to joint session of Congress. “The time for bickering is over,” he says. “The time for games has passed. Now is the season for action.”
  • House version passes in 220-215 vote

    House passes its version, including a government insurance plan, in 220-215 vote. Thirty-nine Democrats oppose the bill; one Republican supports it.
  • Senate passes its version 60-39

    Senate passes its version, without the government insurance plan, 60-39. All Democrats and two independents vote for the bill; all Republicans oppose it.
  • Republican Scott Brown replaces Kennedy

    Republican Scott Brown wins special Senate election in Massachusetts to replace Kennedy, depriving Democrats of the 60 votes needed to overcome Republicans’ procedural hurdles.
  • Obama unveils plan

    Obama unveils his own plan, drawn heavily from the Senate bill.
  • Bipartisan summit

    Obama holds bipartisan summit at Blair House, across from the White House; little progress is made on reaching a compromise.
  • House approves Senate overhaul 219-212

    House approves Senate’s December overhaul, 219-212, because any changes would require another Senate vote, and proponents no longer have 60 votes needed for passage; 34 Democrats join all Republicans in opposition. House passes separate bill including changes.
  • President Obama signs the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

    President Obama signs the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act at a White House ceremony. Thirteen states join together to file suit in Florida; Virginia files suit separately.
  • Law ruled constitutional in Michigan

    U.S. District Court Judge George Steeh rules in Michigan that the law is constitutional.
  • Individual mandate ruled constitutional in Virginia case

    U.S. District Court Judge Norman Moon rules the individual mandate is constitutional in a Virginia case.
  • Individual mandate deemed unconstitutional

    U.S. District Court Judge Henry Hudson upholds Virginia’s claim that the individual mandate is unconstitutional and the penalty for non-compliance is beyond Congress’ authority.
  • Mandate declared unconstitutional in Florida

    U.S. District Court Judge Roger Vinson declares the law unconstitutional because of its mandate that people buy insurance, giving Florida and 25 other states a victory.
  • Law is ruled constitutional in DC

    U.S. District Court Judge Gladys Kessler rules in the District of Columbia that the law is constitutional.
  • Three-judge panel upholds U.S. District Court Judge George Steeh's decision

    A divided three-judge panel of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upholds Steeh’s decision. Judge Jeffrey Sutton becomes the first judge appointed by a Republican president to rule in favor of the law.
  • Three judge panel agrees with Vinson

    A three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals agrees with Vinson that the mandate was unconstitutional but does not throw out the entire law.
  • Three-judge panel overturns Hudson decision in Virginia case

    A three-judge panel of the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals overturns Hudson, ruling unanimously that Virginia did not have the authority to challenge the law.
  • Supreme Court asked to rule on law's constitutionality

    The Obama administration, 26 states and the National Federation of Independent Business ask the Supreme Court to rule on the law’s constitutionality.
  • DC case decision upheld

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia upholds Kessler’s decision. Judge Laurence Silberman becomes the second prominent conservative jurist to side with the Obama administration.
  • Supreme Court agrees to hear case

  • Oral arguments

    <b>March 26-28, 2012:</b> Six hours of oral arguments are held over three days.
  • Supreme Court upholds law