34 states fighting mandatory healthcare

United States
February 1, 2010 8:28am CST
With the healthcare overhaul bill stalled out many state governments are taking this opportunity to put some of their own laws in place...namely making it against the state constitution to make it a "mandate" or "mandatory" to have health insurance and to also make it against the constitution of the state to fine or penalize anyone for not having insurance. Most look like they are slatted to be on the Novermber ballots. So what do you think? Good or bad? Will the state constition override the federal bill if it gets passed?
2 people like this
7 responses
@xfahctor (14111)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Feb 10
Mine is one of those states lil, (thank you rep. Dan Itse!!!!) along with a few others by the same rep to inoculate my state against federal intrusion on a number of areas, including fireamrs regulations and jury nulification of law capability. In most matters, state laws and co9nstitutions do in fact supercede federal laws, despite federal claims to the constrary. Hopefully people will wise up and start electing state governemtns that recognize this as well as sheriffs who are willing to have their officers enforce the state protections and arests and prosecute federal agents and officials atempting to enforce unconstitutional and illegal laws.
1 person likes this
• United States
2 Feb 10
Good for you and your state. We need more state governments on a state wide and local level stand up for states rights against the federal government. I see that as a big change the past year or so. More states are standing up to the federal government and trying to stop it from taking power that belongs to the states.
@urbandekay (18314)
1 Feb 10
Shame, a public health care system is the mark of a civilised country all the best urban
@urbandekay (18314)
1 Feb 10
Nonsense, UK is not a country with high unemployment, low productivity, low personal income nor are many European countries. Hmmm yes, US does spend excessively on defence, bearing that in mind, Europe should perhaps increase defence spending to protect ourselves from the that war-monger of a country USA all the best urban
@jb78000 (15178)
1 Feb 10
@urban - can't you make your points without being rude? you are not 6. @bob - i have to agree this is nonsense but at least you managed to put it reasonably politely
@xfahctor (14111)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Feb 10
Urban, I am pretty thankfull you are not the only U.K. citizen I have ever met. your rudeness is not only unproductive in making your point, you are probably acting in a manner that many of your compatriots would consider an embarasment to them as U.K. citizens.
2 people like this
@jb78000 (15178)
1 Feb 10
hi lil - sorry i don't have any opinion whatsoever on this but i wanted to add something to the box above. i am adding my own response so if anybody can be bothered explaining this particular debate (i don't mean healthcare, i mean your constitution question) can.
@xfahctor (14111)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Feb 10
In a nut shell judith, the federal government has no legal constitutional authority to force citizens to purchase of carry health insurance. It simply isn't in their scope of enumerated powers. So whats happening, is a lot of states are standing up for themselves (about damn time) and passing laws in their states or amendments to their own state constitutions that would make federal enforcement in their states of the health insurance requirement a violation of state laws, which in this case (and most others) supercedes federal law.
2 people like this
@jb78000 (15178)
1 Feb 10
thanks
@poingly (606)
• United States
1 Feb 10
This is where xfahctor isn't quite right--though he and I disagree on this. They can force you to buy health care insurance (in the same way they would force you to pay for the military, etc.)--the problem is that the bill doesn't force it in this way. There is a section in the bill that levees a tax on people who don't have health insurance. It is not health care that is the issue; it is this tax. I know that's not as clean cut as xfahctor's explanation. It is a subtle but key difference.
@poingly (606)
• United States
1 Feb 10
Federal law would trump until it got challenged in court. The point of the changing of the state constitutions is to be able to challenge it in court.
@xfahctor (14111)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
2 Feb 10
"Federal law would trump until it got challenged in court" Not nessesarily...it depends how and if the state enforces their own laws against it. If the state passes the law and then just lets it sit on a shelf collecting dust and said states allows the federal government to walk all over it...then yes, federal law will trump it untill challenged in court. However, if the state enforces it's law....well...I guess the state wins out...what are the feds going to do, send troops in to enforce federal authority? Not likely...not quite at that point yet anyways.... This is how we take back our republic poingly...not through the federal government...the very system that stole our republic in the first place...but through the power of our states.
1 person likes this
• United States
2 Feb 10
I agree with X. It depends on each state. If they decide to enforce their law instead of the federal government one....waht is the federal government going to do about it? Plenty of federal laws are ignored all the time. Heck look at our immigration laws. Some states are strict about enforcing them...some ignore them all togther. Does the federal government do anything to them? No.
2 people like this
@poingly (606)
• United States
2 Feb 10
I'm just stating the way it works. FedsStateLocal Federal law trumps because the feds regulate between states as well as regulate between the fed and states. As long as the two bodies don't have a conflict, things are fine. Though I should state that as long as both laws in conflict are Constitutional, Federal law would trump. This doesn't mean that even if the laws are in conflict that either side cares enough to do anything about it. Oh, also if you don't pay federal taxes, the feds go after you; if you don't pay state taxes, the states do.
1 person likes this
@Taskr36 (13928)
• United States
1 Feb 10
Well based on the 10th amendment it would. It's not in the U.S. Constitution so it is a power left to the states.
• United States
1 Feb 10
You know that and I know that....but somehow the feds have forgotten that. When asked about it....members of congress said if they pass the bill with the mandate it will supercede any state constitutional amendment. Which is complete BS. You know this going to spark a huge fight. State vs Feds in who has what rights. Heaven forbid they read the constitution and follow it.
@poingly (606)
• United States
1 Feb 10
Federal law actually trumps, but it could go to court where it would have to be proven to be Constitutional. Not going to get into the whole 5th Amendment/14th Amendment/etc. stuff where the health care bill could fall under.
• United States
2 Feb 10
I agree with Taskr...what powers that federal government has are spelled out in the constitution. It also states all the rest that are not specifically spelled out for the federal government are to be left to the individual states to decide on their own.
@anniepa (26890)
• United States
1 Feb 10
Lil, you know I'm very passionate about this issue but I've gotten to the point where I don't know WHAT to think and I'm sure not going to make any predictions about what's going to happen! I honestly don't know if the individual state constitutions will override a federal bill or not. Let's put it this way, those of us ordinary citizens who care about the Constitution and think we know how to interpret have certainly been surprised before by court rulings so who knows how it would play out in court. I've had VERY mixed feelings on a mandate from the beginning. Nobody wants to be told they have to spend their hard earned money on something they don't want to spend it on and I HATE the idea that the crooked, corrupt, GREEDY insurance companies would be the biggest winners if there were a mandate. However, on the flip side I DO understand the need for a mandate to make the type of health care reform on the table have any chance of working. The goals are supposed to be to cover those who aren't insured and to bring costs down for everyone, right? Since we as a country aren't about to change the laws so someone who is unable to pay for treatment could be refused care in an ER as long as there is no mandate there will always be some who for whatever reason choose not to get insurance with the knowledge that they can always use the ER as their doctor's office and if they can't pay, they can't pay. ER bills are several times higher than doctor visits not to mention that when someone waits to visit the ER their illness is usually more expensive to treat, so all these bills that are unnecessarily high will be passed on to anyone who has insurance or can pay in the form of higher premiums and higher fees. Basically, I'd have to see the final product once a bill has been reconciled between the two bills before I could really pass judgment but my feeling is that there would have to be generous subsidies for lower to middle income people and there would have to be a cap on how much of one's income they could be required to pay. I've said this before over and over again but what I'd like to see happen is for this to push Congress into realizing a single-payer system which makes it totally clear that all medical decisions are up to the patient and the doctors is the only true way to go. Annie
@xfahctor (14111)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Feb 10
The courts do not have an overall good or comforting history on their rulings. the court itself was never intended, despite the public belief to the contrary, to be an "interpreter" of the constitution in the sense most people believe it was, or at least the degree of it that they have and do. it has lead to often compleltely and blatently unconstitutional calls by the court. Whether or not they were rightous or well intended is irelevent and it often happens that it works to the ill intended rulings as well. One does not have to enforce coverage to do this, but that is besides the point...more on this later though. "ahl be bahk"
2 people like this
• United States
2 Feb 10
each state has the right to decide the laws that govern it.They also have the right to decide what will be in their state constitution. So I don't have an issue with it. I believe in state's rights. So I say let them decide it. it will be put on the ballot and the people will get to vote and decide for themselves.
@laglen (19783)
• United States
1 Feb 10
My State had passed this a few years ago, but as it stands, it is not enforced. We will see this fall!
• United States
2 Feb 10
How it is not enforced? Are they fining people who don't have insurance? These states are trying to put on the ballot that people who do not have insurance can not be punished.