Lawmakers in Oklahoma late Tuesday announced their intent to file a lawsuit challenging the unconstitutional mandate in Obamacare that forces people to buy government-approved health insurance whether they want to or not — or pay a fine.
The Washington Post reports Oklahoma House Speaker Chris Benge and Senate President Pro Tempore Glenn Coffee, both Republicans, said they plan to sue the Congress, the president and the Secretary of Health and Human Services in an attempt to block the unlawful mandate provisions. They are in the final stages of passing legislation that would allow them to file suit.
Earlier this month Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmondson, a Democrat, refused to join the lawsuit led by Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum saying he would participate only if the legislature forced his hand by passing a bill requiring him to act.
"Our concern is that the attorney general’s effort would be lackluster, at best,” Benge said. “We have an obligation to our citizens to challenge this unconstitutional bill, which will lead to unprecedented control of a large portion of the U.S. economy. The high taxes required in the law will be a burden that we cannot afford.”
Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli filed a lawsuit separate from Florida’s multi-state effort challenging the mandate based on a specific state law barring the government from requiring that Virginians buy health insurance.
An unprecedented 20 states are currently challenging the new federal health care law in the Florida suit, Alaska being the latest to join the effort:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington State.
An Oklahoma lawsuit would bring the total of states involved in litigation against Obamacare to 22 when including the Virginia suit. The count is quickly closing in on half of the states poised to challenge the new law. The unprecedented size and scope of the challenge by the states virtually guarantees that eventually the Supreme Court will decide the matter.
House Republican Conference Secretary John Carter (R-Texas), a former judge, led the floor effort last night in the House of Representatives during an hour of special orders speeches to support the state challenges to Obamacare.
Carter said the founders wrote the Constitution to prevent precisely the type of tyrannical abuse in the healthcare bill.
“They were trying to get tyranny off our back, and stop it from imposing its will against the people,” Carter said. “Are we going to expand the Commerce Clause to regulate individual activity to demand we buy something just because Congress says we should?”