Wednesday, 04 August 2010

Missourians Vote to Nullify ObamaCare

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“Missouri voters on Tuesday overwhelmingly rejected a federal mandate to purchase health insurance, rebuking President Barack Obama’s administration and giving Republicans their first political victory in a national campaign to overturn the controversial health care law passed by Congress in March,” reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The measure, known as Proposition C, was approved by 71 percent of those voting in the August 3 primary, with 29 percent voting against it.

The proposition asked whether state law should be amended to “deny the government authority to penalize citizens for refusing to purchase private insurance or infringe upon the right to offer or accept direct payment for lawful health care services,” as The New American reported on August 1.  It also included “a provision that would change how insurance companies that go out of business in Missouri liquidate their assets,” said the Post-Dispatch.

The paper continued: “‘The citizens of the Show-Me State don’t want Washington involved in their health care decisions,’ said Sen. Jane Cunningham, R-Chesterfield, one of the sponsors of the legislation that put Proposition C on the August ballot. She credited a grass-roots campaign involving Tea Party and patriot groups with building support for the anti-Washington proposition.”

Another state legislator, Sen. Jim Lembke, R-Lemay, said, “It’s a big number. I expected a victory, but not of this magnitude. This is going to propel the issue and several other issues about the proper role of the federal government.”

Sensing a winning issue, U.S. Rep. Roy Blunt, another Republican, got on board with Proposition C late last week.

“Missouri was the first of four states to seek to opt out of the insurance purchase mandate portion of the health care law that had been pushed by Obama,” wrote the Post-Dispatch. “And while many legal scholars question whether the vote will be binding, the overwhelming approval gives the national GOP momentum as Arizona, Florida and Oklahoma hold similar votes during midterm elections in November.”

The big question about the effectiveness of the measure is this: What if the federal government sues Missouri over this referendum, as it is suing Arizona over its anti-illegal immigration law? When state law conflicts with federal law, which one wins out? Courts usually rule in favor of the federal government, even when Washington is clearly overstepping its constitutional bounds, as it is in the case of ObamaCare.

The Post-Dispatch quotes a University of Missouri law professor to the effect that the feds will probably win if they take this measure to court. However, the newspaper notes, “Cunningham is undaunted” and is “ready to do battle in court,” believing that “there is substantial legal status to this thing.”

If the courts actually followed the Constitution in their rulings, Missouri would undoubtedly win such a lawsuit. Unfortunately, that’s a big if. Regardless, other states should continue with their efforts to nullify ObamaCare, and Congressmen and Senators should keep up their attempts to repeal it. It is, as Blunt discovered, a winning issue — both for politicians and for liberty.

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