States Accept Federal Health Grants, Despite Claiming That Health Law Is Unconstitutional

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it is awarding $220 million in grants to 13 states to help them create exchanges as required under the Affordable Care Act, bringing the number of states that are “making significant progress” in creating exchanges to 29, the agency’s press release claims. But interestingly, nine of the 13 states receiving funding have Republican governors, and seven are part of lawsuits claiming that the law is unconstitutional. Nebraska, which has put exchange implementation on hold until the Supreme Court upholds the law’s constitutionality, also accepted the ACA grant. So far, 13 states have passed exchange legislation and five governors “have taken some form of executive action to continue exchange planning after legislatures balked.”