A federal judge yesterday ruled the Obama administration does not have the authority under the Affordable Care Act to send billions of dollars of cost-reduction payments to insurers without an appropriation from Congress. “Cost sharing reduction payments” had been made to insurance companies to encourage their lowering deductibles and co-payments for low-income Americans who have purchased insurance through the ACA exchanges.  The “Appropriations Clause” of the US Constitution provides that federal money only be drawn from the Treasury and expended by Congressional Appropriation (Article 1, Section 9, Clause 7).  In a 38-page decision, U.S. District Court Judge Rosemary Collyer rejected each of the administration’s argument for validating the payments, granted summary judgement on the matter to the US House of Representatives which initially filed the challenge and enjoined any further payments until a valid appropriation is made.  Anticipating the inevitable appeal by the Obama White House, she also granted a stay of her own injunction pending any appeal.