>>The States Will Be the Next Battlefield in the Fight Over ObamaCare – Big Government
Posted February 22, 2010on:
Â» The States Will Be the Next Battlefield in the Fight Over ObamaCare – Big Government posted in December, 2009
I blogged on this article previously and it still holds true today. In fact much more so since Washington is still not willing to give up or listen to the American people. Obama has called a conference with the Republicans and is offering his own version of the bill today on line. It is merely a rehash of the Senate bill from what I can tell thus far without reading the entire thing. I am simply tired of reading and rereading these huge wordy bills , sorry folks but at some point the Old Girl has had enough. 🙂 I will wait and see what happens and if there is a final bill coming out of this sham then I will read it.
But just to bring you up to date here is a review of the first article and the new one and update today from Big Government:
According to the American Legislative Exchange Council, lawmakers in 24 states have at least pledged to introduce legislation modeled after their Freedom of Choice in Health Care Act, which nullifies an individual mandate to purchase federally approved health insurance. This amounts to a bold reassertion of the 10th Amendment, that long ignored protection of state sovereignty against federal infringement. Thirteen of these states have already filed or pre-filed constitutional amendments to protect the rights of individuals to make their own healthcare decisions.
One of these states is Arizona, where voters will decide the issue by statewide ballot in 2010. When voting on the Arizona Health Insurance Reform Amendment, citizens of the Grand Canyon State will have an important opportunity to take the lead in fighting federal overreach. A similar measure was only narrowly defeated — by 8,000 votes out of over 1.8 million cast — in 2008. Given the extreme likelihood that the 2010 electorate as a whole will be in a more anti-Obama mood than the one that swept him into office in 2008, there is reason for optimism that the measure will pass.
So what happens if Arizona, or any other state, passes such an amendment? Unfortunately, that is unlikely to be the end of it. ObamaCare supporters will quickly challenge the amendment in court, lest other states be tempted to follow suit and protect their citizens and healthcare markets from federal control.
The Constitution is fairly clear on this question. The federal government has a limited set of enumerated powers, while everything else is reserved to the states and the people. None of these powers includes the ability to force people to purchase health insurance, or anything else for that matter. Sadly, modern Constitutional jurisprudence is far removed from the document it is purportedly based on. By consistently misinterpreting the commerce and general welfare clauses, the courts have allowed significant extra-constitutional growth of the federal government over the course of the nation’s history.
Despite this state of affairs, there is some hope that even a court system based on the flawed constitutional understanding of modern jurisprudence will balk at the audacity of ObamaCare. A recent report by the Congressional Research Service acknowledged that, “it is a novel issue whether Congress may use [the commerce] clause to require an individual to purchase a good or service.” And when this same issue arose in 1993 during the HillaryCare battle, the Congressional Budget Office found the mandate to be “unprecedented,” noting that, “the government has never required people to buy any good or service as a condition of lawful residence in the United States.” Still, lacking any Supreme Court precedent, a potential legal battle could go either way.
There can only be a legal battle, however, if the states and the people first reassert their sovereignty.
In order to insure that happens, activists should fight not just in Washington D.C., but also in the legislatures of their home states. Don’t just call Nancy Pelosi — who doesn’t care — or some moderate Senator who can be bought off by a few hundred million dollars in pork, but also call your state representative and tell him or her that you want an amendment to protect the rights of citizens to decide what, if any, insurance they want to purchase.
Many lawmakers across the U.S. are already sticking out their necks by standing up against a federal takeover of the healthcare industry. Legislators from 15 states held a press conference on Dec. 4th to unveil a letter, signed by over 100 lawmakers from 45 states, opposing ObamaCare. We must now put pressure on their colleagues to join them. If elected officials in Washington D.C. cannot be counted on to fulfill their duty to pass only those laws within their constitutional authority, then we have no choice but to look elsewhere to recapture our rights.
UPDATED: Health Care Freedom Act Featured at CPAC posted February 21, 2010
The number of states advancing legislation to protect individual choice from federal mandates has increased since December from 24 states to 35. But merely introducing legislation isn’t enough; we need victories.
Virginia delivered a first step toward just that, as its state House recently passed a version of the Health Care Freedom Act. Elsewhere, the Tennessee Senate passed the bill 26-1, while other states, such as Idaho, have successfully advanced the bill out of committee.
These bills offer to protect citizens in two crucial ways. First, they would guarantee the right to purchase care directly, so that bureaucrats cannot be forced between patients and doctors against their will. Second, it would assure that citizens are protected from unconstitutional mandates to purchase insurance by allowing them to opt-out from any such federal program.