Georgia legislators seek to ban state agencies from implementing Obamacare

Nullify Obamacare

The Georgia General Assembly is gearing up for another legislative session and some members are already pre-filing bills that could be considered next year. Among those pieces of legislation is a measure — The Georgia Health Care Freedom and ACA Noncompliance Act — introduced by state Rep. Jason Spencer (R-Woodbine) that would ban state agencies from providing any support to implement Obamacare:

A group of five Republican Georgia state legislators opened up a new line of attack against the Affordable Care Act Monday, following their counterparts in South Carolina in a movement that could soon involve other conservative states.

“Our (proposed legislation) simply says the state of Georgia and any political entity, any agency, any public university or college will simply not be able to implement Obamacare at all,” said lead sponsor Rep. Jason Spencer (R-Woodbine) in a news conference on the State Capitol steps.

“We’re telling the Obama administration: ‘If you want the ACA in Georgia, you’re going to pay for it and you’re going to implement it. And don’t expect aid from Georgia in doing so,” said co-sponsor state Rep. Michael Caldwell (R-Woodstock).

Spencer’s legislation is based on proposals pushed by the Tenth Amendment Center, which offers state-based solutions on how to “nullify” Obamacare. South Carolina legislators have introduced virtually the same bill and put it on fast-track for passage.

Obamacare supporters are already complaining about the legislation, and they’re using the “nullify” angle to paint the proposal and these legislators as “extremists,” given that the doctrine of nullification is considered to be constitutionally dead.

But the fact of the matter is that the 2012 Supreme Court decision that upheld. Obamacare gave states substantial room to decide whether or not to participate in Medicaid expansion or the exchanges.

What’s more, states opposed to Obamacare can file lawsuits or join any of the three existing lawsuits that challenge IRS regulations that would enforce the law’s employer mandate and provide insurance subsidies in states that opted not to participate in the exchanges. Because the federal tax agency has decided to enforce these provisions with no legal authority, these cases could, quite literally, bring Obamacare down.

In addition to Spencer, the legislation has been co-sponsored by state Reps. Michael Caldwell (R-Woodstock), Delvis Dutton (R-Glennville), David Stover (R-Newnan), and Scot Turner (R-Holly Springs). The Georgia General Assembly is set to convene on Monday, January 13, 2014. Georgia House leaders have not taken a stance on the measure.

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