38 States Poised to Stop Federal Mandate at the State Line
Today the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is accelerating its nationwide effort to block the federal requirement to purchase health insurance, a key component of the health reform bill passed last night by Congress.
Thirty-eight states have either filed or announced their intentions to file ALEC's Freedom of Choice in Health Care Act
, model legislation that would ensure a patient's right to pay directly for medical care and prohibit an individual from being penalized for not purchasing health insurance. The Virginia and Idaho legislatures have already enacted the legislation, and the Arizona measure will appear on the November ballot.
"State legislators now have a 'deem and pass' maneuver of their own," said ALEC health task force director Christie Herrera, who is coordinating the nationwide effort. "Lawmakers in 38 states have deemed this federal health reform bill unconstitutional, and are now redoubling their efforts to pass legislation that would stop ObamaCare at the state line."
In addition to action in Virginia, Idaho, and Arizona, ALEC's Freedom of Choice in Health Care Act has also passed one legislative chamber in Georgia, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Tennessee and is soon expected to be heard on the floor in Alabama, Kansas, and Michigan.
A complete map with links to the legislation in each state is available online at www.alec.org and a full statement of the American Legislative Exchange Council follows.
Statement of the American Legislative Exchange Council on last night's passage of H.R. 3590 and H.R. 4872:
"The American Legislative Council, the nation's largest nonpartisan membership association of state legislators, denounces the actions of Congressional leaders to force unconstitutional and untenable health care legislation on a nation that does not want it.
"From the unprecedented requirement to purchase private health insurance coverage, to the job-killing taxes on our businesses, to the budget-busting Medicaid expansion, this much is clear -- state lawmakers are the last line of defense to stop this legislation from trampling on our health care freedom.
"That's why more than three-fourths of the states have mobilized around ALEC's Freedom of Choice in Health Care Act, a move to ensure that residents can't be forced to purchase health insurance under fine or penalty. This model legislation, which has been enacted by the Virginia and Idaho legislatures, will provide states with protection in the wake of Congressional action.
"We recognize that states have the authority to protect the rights of their citizens against federal encroachment, and we fully expect a constitutional challenge that we can fight -- and win."
American Legislative Exchange Council