Virginia Attorney General Calls for Health Care Case to Be Fast-Tracked to Supreme Court

By Dan Joseph | February 4, 2011 | 4:00 AM EST

Then-state Sen. Ken Cuccinelli addressing the Virginia State Republican Convention in May 2009, where he was nominated for state attorney general. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

( - Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli announced Thursday that he will petition the U.S. Supreme Court to consider the state’s lawsuit against Obamacare now, rather than wait for the case to be decided by the court of appeals.

Cuccinelli said the case is of such imperative public importance that it should be fast-tracked to the highest court to avoid the time and expense required to implement a law that very well may be voided as unconstitutional when it comes before the Supreme Court.

“Currently, state governments and private businesses are being forced to expend enormous amounts of resources to prepare to implement a law that, in the end, may be declared unconstitutional,” Cuccinelli said in a news release. “Regardless of whether you believe the law is constitutional or not, we should all agree that a prompt resolution of this issue is in everyone’s best interest.”

The request comes on the heels of a decision by U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson in Florida, who, earlier this week, ruled that the health care law was unconstitutional and voided the entire legislation.

While Vinson stated that his ruling should serve as the “functional equivalent” (p. 75 of ruling) of an injunction against the law, many states have continued preparations to comply with the various mandates contained within Obamacare, in the knowledge that the constitutionality of the bill will ultimately be decided by the Supreme Court.

However, because the Supreme Court typically does not take cases before they have been ruled on by appellate courts, it could take months before case is heard by the high court.

“Presently, 28 states have filed suits challenging the authority of Congress to enact this law,” Cuccinelli said in the release. “That, in and of itself, is exceptional and makes the cases excellent candidates for immediate review in the Supreme Court.”

In July of 2010, Virginia became the first state in the nation to file suit against the health care law.