Bill McCollum: Florida Ruling is Victory for States Rights and Personal Freedom

Feb 1 • 1828 Views • View Comments

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Yesterday a federal judge ruled in favor of the 26 states challenging the constitutionality of President Obama’s health care law, striking down the individual mandate and the rest of the law with it. I’m proud to have led the original group of 13 states in filing that lawsuit last March in Pensacola. This is the most important lawsuit in my lifetime regarding individual liberty and states’ rights.

In a well-researched and thoughtful decision, Judge Roger Vinson ruled that the individual mandate was unconstitutional, and that Congress had absolutely no authority under the Commerce Clause to regulate inactivity, e.g. requiring people to buy a product like health insurance. Judge Vinson declared the entire Obamacare law unconstitutional because the insurance provisions in the law would not work without the individual mandate, the insurance provisions are essential to the rest of the law, and Congress deleted a severability clause.

This lawsuit may very well be one of the most important cases in our history because the judge’s ruling clearly defines the boundaries of the Commerce Clause as not applicable to inactivity; a person’s choice not to purchase health care insurance cannot be construed as any type of economic activity. This decision is so important because it reins in a federal government that otherwise would know no boundaries. If the individual mandate were to be upheld, the federal government could mandate almost anything, from a higher consumption of broccoli to the purchase of certain types of automobiles.

Ultimately the final ruling on the law’s constitutionality will have to be made by the Supreme Court of the United States, but I’m greatly encouraged by Judge Vinson’s ruling.

Warm regards always,



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