Va appeals court dismisses health reform suits

RICHMOND, Va. — A federal appeals court in Virginia has dismissed two lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul.

The unanimous decision Thursday by a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is the second appellate court ruling affirming the government’s right to require individuals to buy health insurance or pay a penalty. A federal appeals court in Cincinnati also upheld the law, but an appeals court in Atlanta struck down the insurance mandate.

Two of the judges on the Virginia panel were appointed by Obama, the other by Bill Clinton. They rejected claims by the state’s Republican attorney general and Liberty University that the insurance mandate is unconstitutional.

More than 30 lawsuits have been filed over the law.

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