Posted by: Deborah D | August 19, 2010

Goldwater Institute sues Fed over Obamacare.

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Goldwater Institute sues Fed over Obamacare.

It’s nice to know the late Barry Goldwater is getting in on the act of protecting Americans from an overreaching federal government. The Goldwater Institute has sued President Obama, Treasury Secretary Geithner, Health and Human Services Director Kathleen Sebelius and Attorney General Eric Holder on behalf of private citizens and elected lawmakers whose rights have been trampled by the 2,500-page monstrosity known as Obamacare.

President Obama’s health care bill represents the greatest expansion of federal involvement in medicine since the creation of Medicaid and Medicare. As U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson of Virginia recently described it, the bill “radically changes the landscape of health insurance coverage in America.”  Snip –

If left unchallenged, the health care bill redefines some provisions of U.S. Constitution that have existed for more than 220 years. There will be virtually no limits on the power of Congress and federal agencies to control the lives of individual Americans.

The Goldwater Institute is offering the strongest legal challenge to date in Coons v. Geithner by arguing the federal health care bill exceeds the powers of Congress, violates individual rights, coerces the votes of state lawmakers, and violates the separation of powers by setting up a new bureaucracy without meaningful congressional oversight or review by the courts.  Snip –

Can we win?

  • Conventional wisdom holds that federal law normally trumps state laws when they conflict, but this is a vast oversimplification. Federal law prevails only if Congress has authority in the Constitution to enact the legislation, the federal law does not violate constitutionally protected rights, and the federal law does not usurp powers reserved for the states. The federal health care bill fails on all three levels.

  • The U.S. Supreme Court repeatedly has sided with states over the federal government in recent clashes about the powers of the states and federal pre-emption….

  • The Obama administration is expected to argue this lawsuit should be dismissed because the federal health care bill won’t be fully implemented until 2014. But a lawsuit from the state of Virginia recently survived a similar claim before U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson, who ruled the pending changes to health care insurance are so significant that Virginia deserves its day in court (Washington Post, Aug. 3, 2010).

  • When lawsuits challenging the health care bill aren’t dismissed, part of the federal government’s strategy will be to wear down those who have filed the lawsuits until they are too tired to continue or they have drained their financial resources. This case can be expected to last three years or longer. The Goldwater Institute is committed to pursuing this lawsuit as long as it takes thanks to the generosity of its supporters.

The lawsuit, Coons v. Geithner, has as the plaintiff a business owner in Tempe, AZ. It was exciting to me to see the Goldwater Institute getting involved in this. Old Barry should be smiling from above. You can read much more here:

In an article released by the Institute, they quote both the litigator and the plaintiff of the Coons v. Geithner case, both of whom make invaluable points regarding the rights of the individual. We do still have individual rights rather than “collective rights,” right?

“This lawsuit is our effort to bring down one of the most sweeping invasions of individual liberty and state sovereignty in American history,” said Clint Bolick, litigation director for the Goldwater Institute. “The federal health care bill is a sledgehammer to solve a problem that needs the precision of a scalpel. This is the most overbearing and intrusive way possible to try to address America’s rising health care costs.”

Nick Coons serves as the lead plaintiff in the lawsuit. A small business owner from Tempe, Mr. Coons pays for all of his medical care out of his own pocket and he wants to continue making his own health care decisions. Under the federal health care bill, Mr. Coons will face significant fines from the IRS if he doesn’t buy a health insurance plan that has been approved by the government by 2014.        

“The government is making me spend money on something that I don’t want,” Mr. Coons said. “Is a stranger who works for the government in some other part of the country really going to know what I need? I am the best qualified to make these decisions for myself.”

The new federal law also violates Mr. Coons’ medical privacy by forcing him to disclose his medical records to an insurance company, and those records could be accessed by the federal government and others without his permission.

Read the article here:

Related: A Battle for liberty.

Another American citizen is also suing the federal government regarding Obamacare. This is a gentleman, and former Army National Guardsman, who fought in Iraq for two years only to come home to discover that what he fought for over there, individual liberty for Iraqis, is being taken away here in the United States. This is written by Mark Sissel in the Iowa City Press-Citizen as an op-ed.

…explaining what exactly I’m challenging: The constitutionality of the health care law’s “Individual Mandate.” Beginning in 2014, nearly everyone but the poor will be required to purchase a private health insurance plan if he or she isn’t already covered by an employer.

Not just any health insurance will be allowed. For example, because I’ll be older than 30 when the mandate kicks in, I won’t be given an option to buy low-cost, high-deductible insurance that would pay only for “catastrophic” medical situations. Instead, I’ll have to buy a more costly plan with a broad range of federally prescribed coverage.

The government should not limit our choices about such intensively personal matters, nor should it impose such unnecessary burdens on our lives.

Consider my situation. I am a healthy 29-year-old fresh out of art school, seeking to build my small business, based in Iowa City, as a fine artist specializing in realistic drawing and painting. I am a man of limited means and struggle to achieve my modest dreams. Every penny counts in the service of my career goals, but the federal government is intent on slowing down my progress — and the progress of every other productive man and woman in this country — in its drive to socialize the American health care system.

As a business person, I intend to cover my own medical expenses, and I want the freedom and flexibility to do my own budgeting, including setting aside money for medical needs.

My principles, I believe, are the same ones held by our Founding Fathers. To defend individual freedom, they tried to limit the size of the federal government and what it could do. They could not have conceived of the federal entanglement in people’s personal, private choices that Obamacare represents.

We are invoking the Constitution’s Commerce Clause — a provision that both gives the federal government power and draws boundaries around that power. Congress is authorized to “regulate commerce … among the several states.” But that is not a license to compel anyone to engage in commerce, or to force us to buy federally dictated products.

These are just two more lawsuits in pursuit of preserving the individual liberties of all United States citizens. These folks deserve your support. Please read all of Sissel’s editorial here:


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