Ohioans fighting to kill Obamacare with state constitution

Ohio-based groups have issued yet another challenge to Obamacare’s constitutionality.

More than 540,000 voters in the state have signed petitions in favor of a ballot initiative to amend Ohio’s state constitution to directly conflict with Obamacare’s individual mandate. (TOUGH MEDICINE: Obamacare still angers conservative voters, focus groups say)

Pending the secretary of state’s approval, the initiative will appear on ballots statewide in November 2011, alongside a union-driven initiative to repeal Senate Bill 5, which limited public workers’ collective bargaining rights.

Ohio Liberty Council’s Chris Littleton told The Daily Caller that there are two major prongs to the health care amendment. First, it will challenge Obamacare’s individual mandate. Second, it will prevent Ohio from passing any state-based version of Obamacare.

“By definition we’re putting the Ohio constitution in conflict with federal law, meaning it has to be challenged. We’re proud of that. That’s what we wanted to do,” Littleton said.

As for the state-based system protections, Littleton references 2012 Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney’s reforms while he was governor of Massachusetts.

“We wanted this to protect ourselves from something like a state-based system, like Romneycare in Massachusetts, so it wouldn’t happen here,” Littleton said.

The official backer for the initiative is Ohioans for Health Care Freedom. Even if voters pass this ballot measure in November, the battle would then likely move to the courts.

Maurice Thompson, the executive director of the Columbus-based 1851 Center for Constitutional Law and general counsel for the initiative’s backers, told TheDC he’s confident they could succeed legally going forward. But, he said, “there’s no single clear answer” about what would happen should voters pass the amendment to their constitution.

“What we will probably do is file an action on behalf of Ohioans who don’t wish to purchase insurance,” Thompson said, adding that they’d ask the state of Ohio to “stop implementing Obamacare immediately because it will be violating our state constitution.”

Littleton said he’s impressed by how grassroots activists came together around the state to get this done. He said they used little money and had barely any experience as political activists. “If they spent, 30 or 40 grand, I’d be shocked,” Littleton said. “It’s probably one of the most impressive displays of citizen activism ever across the country”

“It could be the biggest moment for the entire liberty movement,” Littleton added. “I’m humbled to be around these people. They gave up their lives for this cause.”

  • Pingback: Health Care Freedom Amendment — Ohio Constitution.org

  • Pingback: Signatures Submitted to Place Ohio Health Care Freedom Amendment on November Ballot — Ohio Constitution.org

  • oldeagle

    The polls are consistently over 50 percent for the repeal of Obamacare. 28 states are suing for Obamacare to be declared unconstitutional. If Obamacare is implemented, every state will have a substantial increase in the cost of Medicaid that will be passed on the taxpayers. In Texas, the projected increase in new enrollment on Medicaid due to Obamacare is 2,416,752 additional people. This is a 56.7 percent increase over our current enrollment. Gov Perry stated that “This administration continues to spend excessively and impose unfunded mandates upon the states, including this federal health care reform bill that will cost Texas taxpayers more than $27 billion over 10 years for the Medicaid expansion starting in 2014.” We cannot afford to take care of the people we now have on Medicaid. Only 45 percent of the Doctors in Texas now take Medicaid. Moreover, Gov Perry has commented that Texas may drop out of Medicaid and replace it with Texas’s own version of Medicaid. The bottom line is that the vast majority of states are having very severe budget problems. At the time we are facing the most severe budget problems in the states, Obamacare will impose an addition burden in which the Federal Government expects the taxpayers in the budget strapped states to pick up the bill. The extra costs for Obamacare in the majority of states will be met with a very strong backlash from the people that pay the bills in each state: the taxpayer. In Texas, we are finishing the process of establishing our budget for the next two years. A lot of teachers and government workers will be laid off as a result of belt tightening. In two years we will be faced with the choice of significantly reducing the number of teachers and government workers again or significantly increasing our Medicaid expenditures.

    The bottom line is, when Obamacare is implemented, all of the cash strapped states will have to decide whether they will fund the Obamacare mandated significantly expanded Medicaid or reduce the payments to pension funds¸ reduce the funding sent to the local schools, reduce the number of state workers, increase taxes, etc. Obamacare is redistribution of wealth gone amuck.

    • forthi

      Perry has spent $600,000.00 of state money on a rental mansion for himself while the free mansion owned by the state is being renovated for the last two years by his contracting buddies. A honest contractor could probably raze and rebuild the whole thing in less time and for less money than Texas taxpayers have already spent on just this project. He continually bragged about how well Texas is doing under his leadership while campaigning and then finally has to admit Texas is in a deep hole when he wants to cut jobs in the public sector and throw old people out of nursing homes by cutting Medicaid.

      People are only heightened by universal health care because they don’t know anything about having it. Are the rest of the world’s people trying to get rid of their system and put ours in its place? I think not.