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The Affordable Care Act/Obamacare - A State's Rights Issue?

After all these months and years of debate over Obamacare, I'm not sure if I've heard anyone get into the fact that health insurance regulation has been, up until now, a privilege of each individual state, to mandate and forbid as they choose under the 10th amendment.

In 1998 and '99 I worked for a worked as a claims customer service representative for a health insurance company that dealt primarily with PPO (Preferred Provider Organization) plans for group policy holders, though they did also administrate some self-funded policies for groups and individuals.

The company sold policies in 23 states. My team handled calls from 12 states, and I occasionally talked to people from most of the 11 states - which were divided between two other teams - as well.

The reason why we were divided into groups of 12, 6, and 5 states per group was because of the different regulations and requirements demanded by each state of any insurance company that wished to do business there. The 12 states on my roster were the 12 easiest because the state mandates were most similar.

The other 11 states were the ones with special added-on requirements - coverage for children up to age 21, common law marriage, dependent daughter pregnancy, chiropractic, innoculations, mental health.

The last one - mental health - was mandated at the time by Maryland. Though several other states in the union had mandates for mental health at that early date, it was the only one of the 23 states of 50 (or is it 57?) that we sold policies in that did this. (At the time I thought it was the only one in the union because it contained Washington DC, but I've turned out to be incorrect on that).

The mandate is: Benefits for treatment of mental illnesses, emotional disorders, and drug and alcohol abuse for group or individual, Eff. October 1, 1997 http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/health/mental-health-ben...

It is a state mandate - something the state legislature voted on, presented I'm sure as a 'protection' for its citizens. Whether this or any other mandate is 'good' or 'bad', it had definite consequences.

First - from what I saw directly - it drove the price of policies up dramatically.

Second - what I can only infer - it altered peoples decisions on which state to live in. If a DC/Maryland worker wanted to save substantially on health insurance they could choose to live in one of the surrounding states with no such coverage requirements for individual policy holders at the time - West Virginia, Virginia, or Pennsylvania. The fourth bordering state, Deleware, had only that year, in January of '99, passed a mandate for severe mental illness coverage -ST TI 18 § 3578; ST TI 18 § 3343.

Aside from this single example of mental health coverage, the other mandates raise similar examples of how health insurance used to be a state's rights issue, but under Obamacare apparently will be no longer.

From my limited perspective that year at the insurance company Obamacare violates states rights, and needs to be dismantled at the state level. Every requirement, every allowance, every disallowance, needs to be debated by the state legislatures and voted on in a proper and orderly fashion.

Rights not used are rights abused. The states need to stand up for themselves.



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Bump for hot topic.

:)

Pandacentricism will be our downfall.

As good a day as any to revisit this...

bump...

Pandacentricism will be our downfall.

Here is how:

http://www.dailypaul.com/300591/tenth-amendment-center-nulli...

"What if the American people learn the truth" - Ron Paul

don't

nullify my bump

Nullify Now!

From FreedomWorks.org:

Some states aren’t waiting for the outcomes of federal lawsuits in federal courts. They’re simultaneously attempting to make ObamaCare void in their state legislatures. According to the Tenth Amendment Center, “nullification is a tool in the bag of those who want to dam the river of government expansion. It has been used before, and to good ends.” Thus far, 12 states have introduced similar versions to the Federal Health Care Nullification Act drafted by the Tenth Amendment Center this year. These bills either fully nullify or refuse compliance with ObamaCare. The Federal Health Care Nullification Act introduced in Texas (HB297), Montana (SB161), Wyoming (HB0035), Oregon (HB498) and Maine (LD558) all state that ObamaCare is “hereby declared to be invalid, shall not be recognized, is specifically rejected, and shall be considered null and void and of no effect.” Idaho recently passed HB 298 which is nicknamed the “grandson of nullification.”

http://m.freedomworks.org/blog/jborowski/states-seek-to-null...

I find it interesting that the MSM is not spending

very much time informing people of the nullification bills these states are proposing. No reason to inform the plebeians, that's way beyond their understanding, Massa knows what's better for the commoners.
Hey, howabout them Dodgers and Giants?

Yes, I can confirm that:

this is what the Tenth Amendment is all about!

"Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern." ~~C.S. Lewis
Love won! Deliverance from Tyranny is on the way! Col. 2:13-15

States can only exercise their rights if...

they know who they are.

Let me explain. Read the Black's Law Dictionary definition of a state. Paraphrasing, it says: a state is a unified people living on a geographic territory and exercising their sovereinty over all people and things in that territory through a government. The state is the people.

As a matter of international law, Two or more states can not have sovereignty over the same territory. The States of the Union preexist the Federal Government expressed either by the Articles of Confederation, or the Constitution as the United States. They hold their sovereignty apart from the United States. The United States' government maintains its sovereignty as a grant from the States, but exercises it only on its own territory: The District of Columbia, a foreign territory, ruled by a foreign government to that of the States.

Now I assert that there are no longer any lawful States to exert their rights of sovereignty under the 10th Amendment because all the people within the States are nationals of the United States in D.C. and NOT Nationals of the States themselves. They are US citizens. As further evidence, I present the National (federal) Anthem and the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States to which everyone has pledged their allegiance. Afeter all, one cannot pledge allegiance to a foreign nation without becoming a member of it. So US citizens, cannot constitute the people of a lawful State of the Union because they have pledged allegiance to a foreign state: The United States.

Go figure that the 14th Amendment would have f*cked things up so badly. Ignorance of the law hasn't helped much either. LOL!!!!

~ Engage in the war of attrition: http://pacalliance.us/redamendment/

Looks state exchange rates

Would be fine if you lived in a place like Massachusetts, but I happen to live under a horrible tyrant like Rick Perry. Oil companies and insurance companies control the legislation down here and Perry is trying to block any federal funds for poor people like me.

don't want to be poor?

then quit choosing to be poor

Wow - you must be some kind of freakin' genius.

Pandacentricism will be our downfall.

I am so glad you posted this

The insurance industry has been the jurisdiction of the states, each of the states has an insurance commissioner and department of insurance. It's a great example of what's often called "the 50 laboratories of innovation" and it works well. During the financial crises federal regulation failed, but the insurance industry remained solvent. The 50 state regulators did their job and insulated most of the insurance industry from the corruption in Washington. It's the largest industry not to be controlled by the federal government.

You present a good point, under what authority does the federal government have usurping states rights in this area? I understand some states are challenging ACA, but I have not heard how it's developing.

Thanks again for bring up a very valid perspective on the ACA.

Is there a senator or congressman...

willing to bring this up as an issue?

Pandacentricism will be our downfall.

It did not go unnoticed

http://blog.heritage.org/2011/01/17/list-of-states-suing-ove...

But with a sold out supreme court, the 10th amendment carries little weight in DC. I guess if a state or a group of states were very serious about this, they could engage in nullification and just ignore the ACA. Like too many of these heavy handed overrides of states rights, the feds come in with big bucks and just buy their way into control.
The 17th amendment, allowing direct election of the senate did much to neuter the state legislators.

shift to states

One possible solution to the Obamacare mess to make it more consistent with the 10th Amendment and get this albatross of our Nation's neck might be to hand off Obamacare to the individual states. Each state could eliminate Obamacare altogether, run it as is, modify it to make it work better, or dump it for single payer or some other state plan. Washington would be absolved of this nightmare and states could do as they choose consistent with the 10th Amendment.

That is an excellent solution

And would apply to much of what the federal government does that is not specifically outlined in the constitution, from education, agriculture, etc. Gary Johnson talked about "block granting" these functions to the states.

Maryland was the most unique and difficult state to interpret...

Another major difference was in their mandates for innoculations and immunizations for kids up to age 2...

Can't find a handy table yet for this issue as I was able to for the mental health coverage...

Pandacentricism will be our downfall.