NM reaction to judge’s ruling calling part of ObamaCare unconstitutional

By Rob Nikolewski on December 13, 2010
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The big national news Monday (Dec. 13) came from a federal judge in Virginia who ruled that the individual mandate (requiring Americans to sign up for national healthcare or face penalties) was unconstitutional.

In all likelihood, this means that eventually the US Supreme Court will have make a determination about whether national health insurance can go forward in any meaningful way.

Sen. Dede Feldman (D-Bernalillo), a longtime and vocal supporter of government health care, downplayed the decision, saying:

This is just one of three cases the court has ruled on [challenging the health care bill] and it’s the first one that ruled the mandate is unconstitutional … Everyone is looking to to see what happens on appeal.

The ruling has no practical effect. States are still implementing the law and still getting grants and moving ahead with state insurance exchanges.

In fact, Feldman says New Mexico has already received $84 million in federal grants associated with the health care bill. Individual states have until 2013 to have their respective insurance exchanges up and running (if they don’t, those states will have to accept a federal plan) and Feldman thinks New Mexico legislators will debate details of a statewide exchange in the upcoming legislative session.

On the other side of the aisle, outgoing Rep. Janice Arnold-Jones (R-Bernalillo) welcomes the decision:

Posted under Capitol Report.
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