Last night, the United States House passed the Senate's version of the health care bill with a vote of 219 to 212. All Republicans voted against the bill, joined by 34 Democrats. Representative Dennis Moore (D-KS), who represents the 3rd District of Kansas, voted in favor of the bill. Tea Party protesters picketed outside Moore's Overland Park office on Saturday, March 20, 2010.
Senator Sam Brownback (R-KS) has taken a stance against the newly passed health care legislation. "It is important the state of Kansas protects its citizens from the federal government’s abuse of its constitutional authority," said Brownback. "If approved by Kansas voters, a constitutional amendment establishes a foundation for legal challenges to any health care mandate passed by Congress and signed into law by the President.” Kansas residents interested in supporting a state amendment for health care freedom can join Senator Brownback in signing an online petition.
The Kansas House will be debating a state constitutional amendment in favor of allowing Kansas residents the freedom to choose their own healthcare today. The amendment would permit the state to challenge the constitutionality of the federal health care reform on 10th amendment grounds. The 10th amendment gives states sovereignty to regulate and legislate for the welfare of their own citizens, and the proposed amendment would allow individuals and business owners to choose not to participate in the federal program without being penalized by the IRS.
Kansas is one of 37 states debating amendments to their respective state constitutions in favor of health care freedom. Idaho was one of the first states to pass legislation that will allow its citizens to choose not to participate in federally mandated health care reform. Either way, the battle over health care has only just begun.