In a state well known for its liberalism, disfunctionality and snail paced legislative progress, a proposed health care freedom amendment to Article 17 of New York State Constitution moved two steps forward toward a vote in the Senate last week.

Originally introduced by Sen. James Seward (R – Oneonta) as S-7374 back in 2009, the amendment was reintroduced as S-2362 in 2011. If passed, amendment would guarantee New York residents the right to make their own health care choices and would essentially nullify the health insurance mandate in the Patient Protection and Affordable  Care Act.

“A law or rule shall not compel, directly or indirectly, any person or employer or health care provider to participate in any health care system. A person or employer may pay directly for lawful health care services and shall not be required to pay penalties or fines for paying directly for lawful health care services.”

The amendment does not propose any penalties on agents seeking to enforce the PPACA in New York.

The first of the two steps forward occurred on Jan. 4, 2012 with the bill being referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee where it was reviewed. Five days later it was released by the Judiciary Committee and sent forward to the State Attorney General for an opinion.

While there is still a good deal of the legislative process and pitfalls for the bill to go through before it is voted on by the Senate and Assembly, and sent to the Governor’s desk, the past week has afforded the nearly four year old bill a huge leap forward.

To continue the forward motion of this bill, it would be helpful to have the citizens of New York to call, write and email their respective Senators and Assembly members and urge them to support this important legislation. You can locate contact information for New York legislators here.

The bill is co-sponsored by State Senators, DeFrancisco, Griffo, Johnson, Larkin, Mariarz, O’Mara, Ranzenhofer and Young.

To track health care freedom legislation across the U.S., click HERE.

To track legislation nullifying the PPACA in its entirety, click HERE.

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