King v. Burwell and the Rise of the Administrative State

Ronald D. Rotunda – The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act—popularly called either the “ACA,” or “Obamacare” by opponents, proponents, and even the White House—is a complex law totaling nearly a thousand pages in length. The litigation now before the Supreme Court in King v. Burwell presents, on the surface, a simple issue of statutory interpretation. However, that surface has a very thin veneer. If the Court allows administrators carte blanche to change the very words of a statute, we will have come a long way towards governance by bureaucrats. Over the years, Congress has delegated many of its powers, but it has never delegated the power to raise taxes or spend tax subsidies in ways that no statute authorizes.

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Citation: Ronald D. Rotunda, King v. Burwell and the Rise of the Administrative State, 23 U. Miami Bus. L. Rev. 267 (2015).

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