Wisconsin Lawmakers Hope to Authorize/Spur AG to Join Health Care Bill Lawsuit

MacIver News Service – Wisconsin lawmakers are calling on Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen to join in efforts to stop the enactment of the sweeping health care reform law signed by President Obama Tuesday. Some of the 34 GOP legislators who wrote a letter to the AG are among those who are working on an official legislative Resolution that would authorize such action. 

In an interview with MacIver News Service, State Representative Robin Vos (R-Caledonia) made his case for legal action.

“We looked and said well, there are a dozen attorney generals around the county who are looking to find a way to say number one, was it Constitutional and the easier question is how much of what they’ve done is legal,” said Vos. “That is what we want to find out.”

In their letter to Van Hollen, the lawmakers urged action on the basis of both the Constitutionality of mandating the purchase of a product and the fact that the bill is a huge unfunded mandate on the states. Vos said those two facets of the plan violate the 10th amendment to the United States Constitution, which reads: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Vos understands the Attorney General of Wisconsin can not unilaterally decide to file a lawsuit.

“This shouldn’t be a partisan issue and my hope is that if [Attorney General Van Hollen] can help rally independents, Democrats and Republicans around the state–join with legislators, that we can convince a few of those independent Democrats to side with us once again,” said Vos of prospects that the Assembly Resolution authorizing a lawsuit could pass the Democrat-controlled house. “We know there was bipartisan opposition to health care at the Congress. I hope that not everybody in Madison represents the people only in Madison, which I think in Wisconsin is one of the only places this bill is actually popular.”

A bipartisan group of 13 attorneys general filed suit on Tuesday, claiming the sweeping reforms violate state government rights granted by the U.S. Constitution. It was filed electronically with a federal court in Pensacola, Florida, according to the office of Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum.

States joining the suit include: Alabama, Colorado, Idaho, Louisiana, Michigan, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Washington, South Carolina, and South Dakota. That suit contends: “The Constitution nowhere authorizes the United States to mandate, either directly or under threat of penalty, that all citizens and legal residents have qualifying health care coverage.”

We have more in this video report by MacIver’s Bill Osmulski, below.