This fall, Oklahoma voters will decide if they want federal law to force them to buy health insurance, as Senate Joint Resolution 59 (SJR59) was passed by both State houses and enrolled today.
The legislation states that “A law or rule shall not compel, directly or indirectly, any person, employer or health care provider to participate in any health care system” – effectively nullifying federal mandates within the state. It passed the Senate by a vote of 30-13 and the House this Tuesday by a vote of 88-9.
The House had waited to act on this resolution as the legislature attempted to override a recent veto of similar legislation that would’ve enacted the Health Care Freedom Act via statute. But, after the veto override failed, the House took action on SJR59. Because it is a referendum question, the decision bypasses the Governor Henry and goes directly to the people on the November 2nd state ballot.
State Senator Randy Brogdon, in a recent statement about the Oklahoma Health Care Freedom Act, said:
“This legislation does three things. It would prevent the federal government from forcing any Oklahoman to participate in any health care system. It would also prohibit the federal government from dictating how doctors choose to care for their patients. Finally, the measure authorizes the leaders of the Legislature to hire outside council to represent Oklahoma in a lawsuit to prevent Obamacare from being forced on our state.”
Similar legislation has already passed as law in Virginia, Utah and Idaho. Voters in Arizona, Florida and Missouri will be deciding on health care freedom acts in their states this fall as well.
The principle behind such legislation is nullification, which has a long history in the American tradition. When a state ‘nullifies’ a federal law, it is proclaiming that the law in question is void and inoperative, or ‘non-effective,’ within the boundaries of that state; or, in other words, not a law as far as the state is concerned. Implied in such legislation is that the state apparatus will enforce the act against all violations – in order to protect the liberty of the state’s citizens.
CLICK HERE to view the Tenth Amendment Center’s Health Care Freedom Act legislative tracking page
The Tenth Amendment Center has released the Federal Health Care Nullification Act, which directly nullifies the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” on a state level. Click here to learn more.