The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected a request for a quick review on the constitutionality of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, ensuring that the legal battle will begin in lower courts.

The attorney general for the southern state of Virginia had urged the justices to resolve conflicting court opinions on the provision requiring that people buy insurance coverage or face a penalty.

Several federal judges around the nation have upheld the law but others have declared it unconstitutional on the grounds Congress overstepped its authority in requiring that Americans get insured by 2014. Appeals of those rulings are pending in several U.S. circuit courts.

The case still could reach the nation’s highest court in time for a decision by mid-year 2012.



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