South Carolina: Implement Obamacare and go to Jail

In an interesting turn of events, the State of South Carolina was presented with a bill on December 11, 2012 known as the “South Carolina Freedom of Health Care Protection Act” to make it illegal for individuals to attempt to implement Obamacare.  Five republican state representatives Reps. Chumley, Taylor, G.R. Smith, Huggins and Wells introduced the bill

The Bill states. “The General Assembly declares that the federal law known as the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act“, signed by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010, Is not authorized by the Constitution of the United States and violates its true meaning and intent as given by the Founders and Ratifiers, and is invalid in this State, is not recognized by this State, is specifically rejected by this State, and is null and void and of no effect in this State.”

Even though South Carolina defaulted to the federal government to setup an exchange in their state, under this bill federal government officials, contractors or any non-south Carolinian attempting to implement the Affordable Care Act in South Carolina can face up to 5 years in jail, and State officials or natives caught implementing the law could face up to 2 years in jail.

The Bill calls the law unconstitutional, and declares the federal law invalid in the state. However, reading the full bill it fails to mention or refer to the Supreme Court decision on June 29, 2012 that answered that same questions and declared the law constitutional on the federal level, and declared the individual mandate fine a tax penalty, which could be charged by the federal government.  The only rights that were left to the states were the choice on setting up their own exchange or defaulting to the federal government, and their Medicaid expansion option. Not response from the Governor of South Carolina on the Bill yet.

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