NEW ORLEANS — A federal appeals court has rejected a request for a delay in next week's hearing on President Barack Obama's health care law.

Eighteen Republican-leaning states had asked for a delay saying they needed more time to respond to questions the appeals court asked in a filing last week — including questions about who has legal standing to appeal. Briefs on those issues were due Wednesday at the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

The appeals court on Tuesday granted an extension of the deadline until Friday. But the court kept the hearing schedule in place. Arguments are set for next Tuesday at 1 p.m.

At issue in the appeal is a federal judge's December ruling that the law is unconstitutional.