The issue in Texas v. United States is whether the other provisions of the ACA remain constitutional now that Congress, as part of last year’s Trump tax cuts, has zeroed out penalties for individuals who fail to buy insurance as of Jan. 1, 2019. Those penalties were key to the Supreme Court’s ruling upholding the law, which relied on an interpretation of the mandate as permissible under Congress’ broad taxation powers. Large coalitions of pro- and anti-ACA states are battling it out in that case, and meanwhile, Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh this fall filed a mirror-opposite lawsuit, seeking to get the federal courts to affirmatively declare the law constitutional despite the suspension of mandate penalties. Among the arguments he offers is that just because the penalty is zero doesn’t mean it still can’t be construed as a tax. After all, many taxes established by the ACA have been suspended at one point or another, and this one could always be resurrected later.