THIGPEN COMMENTS ON HEALTH CARE RULING

Forest Thigpen, president of the Mississippi Center for Public Policy, issued the following statement on the ruling in federal court striking down the “individual mandate” contained in the health care reform legislation enacted last year:

“Another federal court has recognized that Congress does not have the authority to force Americans to buy a product. It is sad that so many people in Congress failed to read the text and history of the Constitution before they approved the massive health care overhaul bill last year, which included a provision requiring all Americans to buy health insurance.

“If Congress can require you to buy health insurance, it can force you to buy anything else Congress thinks you should own. Whoever is in power will determine what you should buy. It’s bad enough that Congress already takes so much of your money and spends it in ways you never would. It is infinitely worse that they would dictate how you spend the money they allow you to keep.

“Today’s ruling, which includes a refreshing dose of historical perspective on the intent of our nation’s Founders, is a victory for our Constitution, which is ultimately a victory for the American form of government and the American people. It is a matter of freedom.”

The ruling also declared that the individual mandate is not severable from the rest of the law, and therefore, the entire law is unconstitutional. However, he did not issue an injunction calling an immediate halt to its implementation, recognizing that the Supreme Court will ultimately have to rule. Four federal courts have now ruled on the law’s constitutionality. Two have said it is not, and two have said that it is.

Mississippi is a party to the case that was ruled on today. Gov. Haley Barbour signed on with 25 other states, two private citizens, and the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB).

To read the ruling, click here.

Mississippi Center for Public Policy
1/31/11