Idaho Gov. Butch Otter and Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said their lawsuit against the federal government concerning recently approved federal health care legislation should ultimately be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court. Otter said Idaho should win the lawsuit, which could kill the mandate on Idahoans to buy health insurance that would go into effect in 2013. Idaho is joining 12 other states suing the federal government.
IdahoReporter.com has video of a news conference with Otter and Wasden in the governor's office at the Idaho Capitol.
In part one, Otter and Wasden outline the state's legal action against the federal government, including which parts of the U.S. Constitution it may violate.
In part two, Otter talks about his interviews on cable television relating to Idaho's legal action and the Idaho Health Freedom Act. He also said he disagrees with the policy of the health care legislation, not just its constitutionality.
In part three, Otter says the health insurance mandate is different than the state's mandate that drivers have car insurance. Wasden also says the the cost of the state's legal action could be significant.
In part four, Otter says Medicaid, which combines state and federal funding for health insurance for people with low incomes or who meet other qualifications, isn't unconstitutional. Otter also explains what Idaho will do if it loses its lawsuit against the health care legislation.
In part five, Otter says that Idahoans favor letting the state decide not to participate in the national mandate to buy health insurance.
After the news conference, Senate Minority Leader Kate Kelly, D-Boise, said she thinks Otter and Wasden have misplaced priorities in suing the federal government. "We really have a lot of problems at home that we should be dealing with," she said. She added that health care is a tremendously important issue to all Idahoans.
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