Medical Bills Bankrupted ACA Challenger

From the department of "you can't make this shit up."

The lead plaintiff in the case against the Affordable Care Act, which Republicans lovingly refer to as Obamacare, who is being represented by the astroturfing National Federation of Independent Business, filed for bankruptcy in the fall because of medical bills.

Mary Brown, a 56-year-old Florida woman who owned a small auto repair shop but had no health insurance, became the lead plaintiff challenging President Obama's healthcare law because she was passionate about the issue.

Brown "doesn't have insurance. She doesn't want to pay for it. And she doesn't want the government to tell her she has to have it," said Karen Harned, a lawyer for the National Federation of Independent Business. Brown is a plaintiff in the federation's case, which the Supreme Court plans to hear later this month.

But court records reveal that Brown and her husband filed for bankruptcy last fall with $4,500 in unpaid medical bills. Those bills could change Brown from a symbol of proud independence into an example of exactly the problem the healthcare law was intended to address.

The lead plaintiff challenging the ACA is now a lead example of, and a strong case for, the rationale behind the Affordable Care Act.

The objective of the individual insurance mandate is to avoid cases such as Mary Brown's wherein someone who is not insured ends up passing on the cost of their care to others, thus lowering the total cost of all care.