Cox Files Response in Lawsuit Challenging National Health Care LawContact:
John Sellek or Joy Yearout 517-373-8060
August 6, 2010
General Mike Cox today announced that Michigan has joined Florida, 18 states,
and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) in filing a response
to the Obama Administration's motion to dismiss the lawsuit challenging the
constitutionality of federal health care reform legislation.
"President Obama and
Congress are out of step with Americans, and more importantly, out of step with
the Constitution and state sovereignty," said Cox. "If Congress gets away with
this power grab, there are no limits to what they can do next."
The response filed today comes on
the heels of a ruling against the Obama Administration in the case involving
Virginia's health care lawsuit. On Monday, U.S. District Court Judge Henry
Hudson issued a ruling allowing Virginia's health care lawsuit against the
federal government to move forward, noting that,
"Never before has the Commerce Clause and
associated Necessary and Proper Clause been extended this far."
The lawsuit by
Michigan and nineteen other states was filed against the U.S. Departments of
Health and Human Services, Treasury and Labor on March 23, 2010, minutes after
signed the measure into law.
filed in federal court in the Northern District of Florida on March 23, alleges
that the new law infringes upon the constitutional rights of Americans by
mandating all citizens and legal residents have qualifying health care coverage
or pay a tax penalty. By imposing such a mandate, the law exceeds the authority
of Congress under Article I of the Constitution. Additionally, the tax penalty
required under the law constitutes an unlawful direct tax in violation of
Article I, sections 2 and 9 of the Constitution.
further claims the health care reform law infringes on the sovereignty of the
states and Tenth Amendment to the Constitution by imposing onerous new operating
rules that Michigan must follow as well as requiring the state to spend
additional dollars without providing funds or resources to meet the state's cost
of implementing the law.
The Department of Justice
filed a motion to dismiss the case in June, claiming the individual mandate fell
under Congress' ?taxing and spending' authority. This argument conflicted
directly with comments made by President Obama during the debate on the health
care reform bill, including the President's insistence on national television
that the insurance mandate was "absolutely not" a tax.
"If the Congress really
could mandate that everybody in the country do something by just calling the
fine for not doing it a tax, they would have discovered that power a long time
ago," Cox said. "Congress cannot make you buy a product. They cannot force you
to buy a Ford Fusion, and they cannot force you to buy health insurance as a
condition of citizenship."
The hearing on
issues raised by the Obama Administration's motion to dismiss will be held on
September 14 in Pensacola, Florida before Judge Roger Vinson.
A copy of the
lawsuit filed in Florida by Michigan, nineteen states and the NFIB is available
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