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States Seek To Ban Mandatory Insurance

From a bemused Associated Press:

States seeking to ban mandatory health insurance

By David A. Lieb, Associated Press Writer

February 1, 2010

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Although President Barack Obama’s push for a health care overhaul has stalled, conservative lawmakers in about half the states are forging ahead with constitutional amendments to ban government health insurance mandates.

The proposals would assert a state-based right for people to pay medical bills from their own pocketbooks and prohibit penalties against those who refuse to carry health insurance.

In many states, the proposals began as a backlash to Democratic health care plans pending in Congress…

Lawmakers in 34 states have filed or proposed amendments to their state constitutions or statutes rejecting health insurance mandates, according to the American Legislative Exchange Council, a nonprofit group that promotes limited government that is helping coordinate the efforts. Many of those proposals are targeted for the November ballot, assuring that health care remains a hot topic as hundreds of federal and state lawmakers face re-election.

Legislative committees in Idaho and Virginia endorsed their measures this past week. Supporters held a rally at the Pennsylvania Capitol. And hearings on the proposed constitutional amendments were held in Georgia and Missouri. The Missouri hearing drew overflow crowds the day after Obama urged federal lawmakers during his State of the Union address to keep pressing to pass a health care bill. The Nebraska Legislature plans a hearing on a measure this coming week.

Supporters of the state measures portray them as a way of defending individual rights and state sovereignty, asserting that the federal government has no authority to tell states and their citizens to buy health insurance…

State laws or constitutional amendments clearly could bar lawmakers in those states from requiring individuals to purchase health insurance, such as Massachusetts has done. But it’s questionable that such the measures could shield state residents from a federal health insurance requirement.

"They are merely symbolic gestures," said Michael Dorf, a constitutional law professor at Cornell University. "If this Congress were to pass an individual mandate, and if it is constitutional — which I believe it is — the express rule under the supremacy clause (of the U.S. Constitution) is that the federal law prevails."

Many Democratic lawmakers are skeptical of both the intent and the effect of the state measures, entitled in many states as the "Freedom of Choice in Health Care Act." Some have derided it as "political theater" or an attempt to merely shape the public debate

The Mullahs at the New York Times anticipated this irksome tactic and issued their own fatwa back in September, even citing several of the same carefully selected legal Solons:

In Some States, a Push to Ban Mandate on Insurance

By MONICA DAVEY

September 29, 2009

ST. PAUL — In more than a dozen statehouses across the country, a small but growing group of lawmakers is pressing for state constitutional amendments that would outlaw a crucial element of the health care plans under discussion in Washington: the requirement that nearly everyone buy insurance or pay a penalty…

Opponents of the measures and some constitutional scholars say the proposals are mostly symbolic, intended to send a message of political protest, and have little chance of succeeding in court over the long run. But they acknowledge that the measures could create legal collisions that would be both expensive and cause delays to health care changes, and could be a rallying point for opponents in the increasingly tense debate…

[L]egal experts said they saw little room for such a challenge. “States can no more nullify a federal law like this than they could nullify the civil rights laws by adopting constitutional amendments,” said Timothy Stoltzfus Jost, a health law expert at Washington & Lee University School of Law.

Mark A. Hall, a law professor at Wake Forest University who has studied the constitutionality of mandates that people buy health insurance, said, “There is no way this challenge will succeed in court,” adding that the state measures seemed more “sort of an act of defiance, a form of civil disobedience if you will.”

So both the Associated Press and the New York Times and their carefully chosen ‘experts’ have decided that these efforts are doomed from the start. Just “political theater.”

After all, who are we to try to “shape the public debate”?

Still, we seem to recall that when it suits their agenda, our media masters love using the courts as a form of civil disobedience.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, February 1st, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “States Seek To Ban Mandatory Insurance”

  1. proreason says:

    Why can’t they force us to donate to Obamy’s campaigns.

    That would be even more for the public good, wouldn’t it?

    Oh wait, we already pay taxes to the king. So it’s actually happening.

  2. U NO HOO says:

    “Timothy Stoltzfus Jost”

    Aint Stoltzfus an Amish name?

    And we all know how the Amish feel about stuff.

  3. jobeth says:

    If it can work for ‘Eminent domain” I don’t see any reason why it won’t work against Federal mandatory health insurance.

    We as a people have been so happy greedily gobbling up all the Fed ‘goodies’ being passed out we didn’t notice the noose being ever so gently and stelthily looped around our neck.

    Time to wise up and make the Feds work for everything they demand. The Constitution backs up the state’s rights.

    Wake up America. Time to rise up and fight.


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