Illinois Attorney General Madigan on Healthcare Constitutionality
Dear Illinois Attorney General Madigan,
We respectfully request you join a number of other State Attorneys which are filling a lawsuit challenging the Constitutionality of H.R. 3590, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Law.
According to Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution, Congress shall have the power to "regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes, " but does not give Congress the right to regulate commerce between individuals. By requiring all Americans, to purchase health insurance or be faced with penalties for failing to do so, the federal government is attempting to regulate commerce on an individual level in violation on the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution. In its analysis of a similar proposal in 1994, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office found "a mandate requiring all individuals to purchase health insurance would be an unprecedented form of federal action."
In addition, this legislation will negatively impact the State of Illinois' finances at a time when it is already facing a $13 billion deficit. By expanding the eligibility requirement of Medicaid, the federal government is imposing an unfunded mandate on the State of Illinois in excess of $1 billion over five years, starting in 2017 and continuing in perpetuity.
We the Illinois citizens want to have a voice in a lawsuit challenging this unprecedented and unconstitutional legislation. We support a reform of our broken health care system, but HR 3590 is not the proper way to do so. Mandating individuals to purchase health insurance is the beginning of a slippery slope that could lead to the future erosions of our individual liberty. Therefore, we respectfully request that you add Illinois as a party to the multi-state lawsuit against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care law.