Luetkemeyer Backs Legal Brief Challenging Health-Care Law as Court Arguments Loom
WASHINGTON, D.C. - As the U.S. Supreme Court begins considering written legal arguments today on President Obama's health-care law, U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (MO-9) has signed onto a separate amicus brief that challenges the health-care law's constitutionality.
Luetkemeyer and more than a hundred members of Congress, that have signed, are in support of a lawsuit filed by 26 states to invalidate the health-care law. Under the new law, all Americans with taxable income must have minimal health insurance by 2014 or pay a tax penalty.
The brief specifically argues that the U.S. Constitution does not empower Congress to require Americans to purchase and maintain health insurance from a private company for the rest of their lives or pay an annual penalty. The brief also argues that the entire health-care law should be ruled invalid, since the individual mandate cannot be severed from the law and contains no severability clause.
The brief filed today deals with the severability issue and a second brief dealing with the individual mandate will be filed next month.
"While all American families deserve access to high-quality, affordable health coverage, this unconstitutional law instead raises premiums, makes damaging cuts to Medicare, and takes the unprecedented step of penalizing Americans who refuse to purchase[this] product," said Luetkemeyer.
The U.S. Justice Department today is filing its first brief on the merits of the case, which is scheduled to be heard by the nation's highest court in March. It will focus on the core question of whether it is constitutional to make Americans buy health insurance.