States Seek Amendment to Repeal Federal Laws

Monday, 20 Dec 2010 03:18 PM

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Several officials who oppose the national healthcare overhaul are also backing a constitutional amendment that would let states nullify federal laws, the New York Times reports. The so-called “repeal amendment” first proposed by a Georgetown University law professor has caught on with key officeholders in a dozen states and has the support of incoming House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.

Cantor, Virginia, insurance, health, repeal“The repeal amendment would provide a check on the ever-expanding federal government, protect against congressional overreach and get the government working for the people again, not the other way around,” Cantor has said.

The movement grows out of state challenges to the constitutionality of the new healthcare law. Officials in Virginia, in particular, are championing the repeal amendment while also suing the federal government to overturn the new law’s mandate that Americans carry health insurance.

A federal judge in Virginia ruled that mandate unconstitutional this month, throwing the entire healthcare program into limbo. Any constitutional amendment, meanwhile, would have to approved by both chambers of Congress and three quarters of the state legislatures.

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