13 attorneys general sue over health care overhaul
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Attorneys general from 13 states sued the federal government Tuesday, claiming the landmark health care overhaul bill is unconstitutional just seven minutes after President Barack Obama signed it into law.
The lawsuit was filed in Pensacola after the Democratic president signed the bill the House passed Sunday night.
“The Constitution nowhere authorizes the United States to mandate, either directly or under threat of penalty, that all citizens and legal residents have qualifying health care coverage,” the lawsuit says.
Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum is taking the lead and is joined by attorneys general from South Carolina, Nebraska, Texas, Michigan, Utah, Pennsylvania, Alabama, South Dakota, Idaho, Washington, Colorado and Louisiana. All are Republicans except James “Buddy” Caldwell of Louisiana, who is a Democrat.
Some states are considering separate lawsuits and still others may join the multistate suit.
McCollum, who is running for governor, has pushed the lawsuit for several weeks, asking other GOP attorneys general to join him. He says the federal government cannot constitutionally require individuals to obtain health coverage. He is also arguing the bill will cause “substantial harm and financial burden” to the states.
Some states are also looking at other ways to avoid participating in the overhaul. Virginia and Idaho have passed legislation aimed at blocking the bill’s insurance requirement from taking effect, and the Republican-led Legislature in Florida is trying to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot to ask voters to exempt the state from the federal law’s requirements. At least 60 percent of voters would have to approve.
McCollum was working with officials from several state agencies to determine how much the health care overhaul would cost the state. He said earlier this month, “I can’t conceive of any good in this bill and I don’t think any of these agencies can.”
Under the bill, starting in six months, health insurance companies would be required to keep young adults as beneficiaries on their parents’ plans until they turn 26, and companies would no longer be allowed to deny coverage to sick children.
Other changes would not kick in until 2014.
That’s when most Americans will for the first time be required to carry health insurance — either through an employer or government program or by buying it themselves. Those who refuse will face penalties from the IRS.
Tax credits to help pay for premiums also will start flowing to middle-class working families with incomes up to $88,000 a year, and Medicaid will be expanded to cover more low-income people.
No Republicans in the U.S. House or Senate voted for the bill.
Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
We can’t wait until November to push back. Yes, go to the polls and put out anyone who voted for this. But if you do not live in one of the above states, contact your state Attorney General and encourage him or her to join in the suit. Don’t forget to contact your State legislators and push them to take action too.
The Georgia House of Representatives has introduced a resolution to amend the State Constitution “so as to provide that no law or rule or regulation shall compel any person, employer, or health care provider to participate in any health care system and to authorize persons and employers to pay directly for lawful health care services without penalties or fines; to provide for the submission of this amendment for ratification or rejection; and for other purposes.” It’s H.R. 1086 and is only nine votes short of passing the House. For those of you in Georgia, HERE is a link that shows how the Representatives voted. Contact your Representative and tell them you want a “yes” vote to this. If you’re not in Georgia, push your state legislators to amend your state’s constitution. Send them the link to GA H.R. 1086.
It’s way past time for the states to start regaining the rights afforded to them by the Constitution. The TENTH AMENDMENT says, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” Got that Washington? RESERVED TO THE STATES RESPECTIVELY, OR TO THE PEOPLE. The Obama administration and most of Congress is getting a lesson about the Constitution, that little troublesome piece of paper that is a constant reminder of for whom they really work. They’ll get reminded again on April 15, 2010 at the TAX DAY PROTEST in Washington, D.C., and again in November. All the polls are showing that it’s going to get ugly – for the incumbent Democrats and some RINO’s too.