Republican gubernatorial candidate State Representative Rod Roberts filed an amendment to two bills in the Iowa House yesterday that could make it possible to challenge the constitutionality of President Obama’s plan to nationalize the health care industry, which could occur as soon as Sunday. Roberts filed the amendment to both SF 2201 and SF 2356. The Roberts Amendment would prohibit federal laws that require Iowans to purchase particular health care plans or that restrict Iowans’ ability to choose their own health care plan.
“If President Obama and Democrats in Washington, D.C., force health care decisions upon Iowans, I will stand up for the people of Iowa and defend our state’s sovereignty,” said Roberts, an Assistant Minority Leader in the Iowa House of Representatives. “Now is the time for action. I have a plan to defend Iowans’ constitutional rights.”
Roberts said that if the federal government passes a nationalized health care plan that conflicts with the Roberts Amendment, as governor he will file a lawsuit in federal court against President Obama to have the plan struck down as a violation of Iowans’ Tenth Amendment rights. The Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides that powers not delegated to the federal government (such as the regulation of health insurance) are reserved for the states.
“President Obama’s health care plan is an unprecedented power-grab by the federal government that would severely hinder states’ rights. Allowing the nationalization of health care would result in an even larger federal government, higher government spending, higher taxes, and less individual liberty,” said Roberts, a five-term State Representative from Carroll. “President Obama’s plan is unconstitutional, and with my amendment, I will bring a lawsuit against President Obama to have his health care plan struck as a violation of Iowans’ Tenth Amendment rights.”
Other states across the country—such as Virginia—have enacted laws similar to the Roberts Amendment. Roberts also co-sponsored the Health Freedom Act last month, which makes the Roberts Amendment the second bill that Roberts has supported this session to challenge the nationalization of the U.S. health care industry. Roberts’s plan to use the amendment to bring a lawsuit in federal court to challenge the constitutionality of President Obama’s nationalized health care plan is consistent with what state attorney generals and governors are doing throughout the United States.
“I believe in limited government, whether it is at the state or federal level,” said Roberts, who has consistently opposed tax increases as a legislator. “As governor, I will not only reduce taxes and place constitutional limits on state spending to keep state government small, but I will not hesitate to resort to the judicial process through the use of the Tenth Amendment to limit the size of the federal government, too.”