States and small business respond to government motion on health care challenge

Opposition filing says states have standing and face “profound harm” from individual mandate

Published on August 06, 2010

by Brent Baldwin


OfficialWire PR News Bureau

Plaintiffs including twenty states, the National Federation of Independent Business, and several individuals filed a response in a Pensacola federal court to the Department of Justice’s motion to dismiss their challenge to Obama’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or “ACA.”

Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum argues in the filing that the individual mandate, or compulsion to buy insurance, is “manifestly unconstitutional” and that the case is primarily about continuing our federalist system and preserving the sovereignty of the states from “unprecedented intrusion” onto the freedom of its citizens.

Although the mandate does not take effect until 2014, McCollum writes that the states have standing considering they will incur costs immediately from spending on expanding Medicaid enrollment and “enact[ing] statutes or state constitutional provisions to protect their state citizens from compulsion in their healthcare choices.”

Among the key points made by McCollum and the plaintiffs’ lead attorney team of David B. Rivkin and Lee. A. Casey:

  • Employer mandate regime violates Commerce Clause and the Tenth Amendment
  • The mandate exceeds Congress’s powers and violates the Ninth and Tenth Amendments and core principles of federalism
  • The mandate violates due process
  • ACA compels states to administer and enforce federal insurance related programs in violation of the Constitution’s system of dual sovereignty.

U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson has set a Sept. 14 hearing to consider arguments on the motion to dismiss.

The states that have joined the lawsuit are Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Idaho, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah and Washington.



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