Archive for Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Attorney General Six takes wait-and-see approach on challenging federal health care law

Attorney general not ready to join others who say bill is unconstitutional

December 30, 2009


— Kansas Attorney General Steve Six is taking a wait-and-see approach on whether federal health care reform, if approved, would violate any constitutional provision.

The issue arises as Democrats in Congress move closer to handing a bill to President Barack Obama that would eventually require nearly all Americans to have coverage, help many pay for it, and prohibit insurers from denying coverage to people with pre-existing medical conditions.

Republicans oppose the efforts, and in some states, including Kansas, GOP state lawmakers have proposed measures to thwart proposed federal reforms.

Earlier this week, Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum, a Republican who is running for governor in that state, said he hoped to organize other state attorneys general to challenge some provisions of the federal legislation, including one that establishes penalties against people who don’t buy coverage.

In a letter sent to his fellow attorneys general, McCollum said, “I believe our analysis is needed in order to provide Congress our input, and more importantly to protect our states and citizens from a potentially unconstitutional federal mandate.”

Six, a Democrat, was asked if he would join such an effort. His spokeswoman Ashley Anstaett said, “Our office is reviewing the health care reform bill for any concerns regarding its constitutionality. If the bill is passed into law and we have determined that legal issues exist, we will take appropriate action,” she said. “We have not been contacted by any Kansas officials,” to look into the matter, Anstaett added.

Conservative legal groups, such as the Heritage Foundation, have argued that Congress cannot require people to purchase private insurance contracts.


RogueThrill 7 years ago

I am glad the ljworld can spell the plural of attorney general.

I wouldn't have imagined they could.

leedavid 7 years ago

A democrat that wants to sit and do nothing....imagine that.

Glad to see the constitution is important to some people.

scottrin31 7 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Richard Heckler 7 years ago

A federal mandate means the gov't must pay.

Mandating car insurance is apples and onions. Vehicles can kill,injure or damage others property.

Flap Doodle 7 years ago

Lawnmowers can kill, injure or damage others' property.

BigPrune 7 years ago

....In other words, wait-and-see approach means (no way in hell).

After all, the Health and Human Services top dog Kathy hired the AG. Surely he wouldn't want to do anything to tick off the soon-to-be second most powerful person in the country. I wonder who she will be picking to lead the death panels since her campaign for governor was financed by the now deceased Dr. Tiller the baby killer?

Jimo 7 years ago

"Glad to see the constitution is important to some people."


Amazing how many people who say the constitution is important to them are all free and easy when it under attack from their pet politicians.

Please show us where the constitution says: states are not free to set their own drug laws or for that matter that any level of government is free to restrict the personal choices adults make for themselves marriage is a privilege to be handed out to some people but not others that 'state secrets' allow government to hide evidence of their misfeasance and malfeasance that you must get government approval to work that the government doesn't need a warrant to intercept all of your electronic communications that a man-created corporation has identical rights to god-created persons that 41 Senators are allowed to deprive the majority of citizens their right for their majority of Senators to exercise their representative duties and pass legislation that Congress may delegate its power to coin money to an unelected Federal Reserve Board that the President is not subject to Congress' express war powers

feeble 7 years ago

Remind me, has the bill even made it out of conference yet? Wouldn't challenging the federal law now be putting the car before the horse?

Mixolydian 7 years ago

The democrats all voted: Buy health insurance or face steep fines and/or imprisonment.

Remind me again which party is on the big boogyman health insurance payroll?

NOTE, This is not: Own a car, must buy auto insurance Earn income, must pay income tax Own property, must pay property tax This not even a disagreement over where your tax $$ go

This is: Merely exist, must buy health insurance.

How is that constitutional?

Horace 7 years ago

I recently noticed that the Constitution says NOTHING about the president being allowed to live in the White House. Clearly ObaMao should be impeached.

MyName 7 years ago

This is: Merely exist, must buy health insurance. How is that constitutional?

Well if it is passed by Congress and not vetoed by the President, then it is constitutional until proven otherwise. Which of your rights or privileges would be violated by this law is the question.

Or, to put it another way, if Congress passed a tax that forced everyone to pay for a healthcare system, and then used that money to buy insurance, it would be perfectly constitutional by the logic you gave. Yet this isn't somehow? Also, if they passed the same tax, but allowed an exemption from the tax for people who already had insurance, is that not the same result?

meggers 7 years ago

Medicare is government-mandated health care and enrollees are required to pay a premium (unless they also have Medicaid- in that case, Medicaid pays the premium).

Are these folks claiming that Medicare is unconstitutional?

Jimo 7 years ago

"Socialist run health care is an abysmal failure."

Please define socialist run health care. Please define failure. For that matter, please define abysmal. I can think of quite a lot of places that have what you must be thinking of as socialist run health care and none of them have people who would term it an abysmal failure. But then they're probably too stupid to know what's best for themselves.

Mixolydian 7 years ago

MyName (Anonymous) says…

Well if it is passed by Congress and not vetoed by the President, then it is constitutional until proven otherwise. Which of your rights or privileges would be violated by this law is the question.


An act of the government that specifically violates a right given to me would be a constitutional violation.

An act of the government that is not authorized by the consitution is also a constitutional violation.

The real question is what article of the constitution authorizes congress to require citizens to purchase a good or service from a private company?

Why couldn't congress also require every american to buy warranties for thier new appliances, or to only buy GM cars? Rhetorical question...they can't.

If the democrat solution to health care reform is to simply require every american to purchase health insurance or face steep fines and/or imprisnonment, why stop there?

Get a job or face steep fines and/or imprisonment.

Unemployment solved.

Secure sufficent income to rise above the poverty level or face steep fines and/or imprisonment.

Poverty solved.

The democrats plan is not the same as using our tax dollars to impose a government run health program.

MyName 7 years ago


Again, you couldn't list the violation, probably because there isn't one. And I agree, it isn't the same thing, but it you're saying that something far more restrictive would be constitutional but something less restrictive is not? I don't see the logic or the legal framework behind this argument.

And this statement: "An act of the government that is not authorized by the consitution is also a constitutional violation." is meaningless on its face. Either the act is something prohibited by the constitution, which would make it illegal, or it is not, which means you have to show how it is violating someone's rights (either in the constitution or otherwise).

A Constitution is a plan for government. It's not a straitjacket. If you take it to be too limiting, then Congress would have no power to establish laws over anything that didn't exist in the 18th Century, which would make it less than useless at this point.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.