Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson (R) filed a lawsuit against the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) in January of this year, challenging the rule that allows congressional staffers (including Johnson’s staffers) to receive subsides when enrolling in Obamacare.
His lawsuit has been thrown out of court because neither he nor his staffers were personally “injured” by the rule.
The judge dismissed three complains from Johnson — that the senator was burdened by having to determine who qualifies as “official staff,” that the rule hurt his reputation with voters for accepting unwarranted benefits and that it violates his constitutional right to equal protection by treating him differently than other federal employees.
The judge found the injury to Johnson’s reputation unconvincing and said the senator cannot claim injury under the Equal Protection Clause.
Johnson said he will have his staff review the ruling to determine if he should file an appeal.
That would be the same staff he is actively trying to deny subsidies to.
“Given that the Plaintiffs receive, at worst, a benefit, they cannot claim to be injured under an equal protection theory,” [Judge William Griesbach] said.
Common sense prevailed in this case.
In other cases? Not so much.
I would be remiss not to add that Ron Johnson was represented in this case by former Solicitor General Paul Clement, and if you’re a regular reader here you’re probably familiar with Clement’s documented failures.
Clement represented House Republicans in their case to uphold the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). He also represented the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) in the case against the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). And he represented Arizona in the case against the state’s “Papers Please” anti-immigration law SB1070.
Clement is currently representing Seattle-area businesses in their case against the city’s $15-per-hour minimum wage ordinance.
As long as they keep hiring him, they’ll keep losing.