Two lawmakers in Tennessee are initiating a measure that will prohibit the state and all of its agencies from implementing Obamacare. The new law would ban any Tennessee health insurance exchange established under the Affordable Care Act.
State Senator Mae Beavers of Mt. Juliet and State Rep. Mark Pody of Lebanon, both Republicans, announced their intention to block Obamacare exchanges in Tennessee, during a news conference on Wednesday. “The federal government does not have constitutional authority to commandeer state and local governments to enforce or implement these federal health care mandates,” Beavers remarked.
Beavers added that the new law would take a “very strong stand to resist this federal overreach of power.” The senator indicated that she is not sure how the law would affect those who have already signed up for Obamacare using the state exchange. She quipped, “That remains to be seen.”
Beavers plans on filing a bill this year that will allow Tennessee to opt out of Obamacare entirely and create their own state healthcare system. “Anything closer to home is the best way to go” she said. In 2011, she tried twice to pass a bill that would have allowed Tennesseans to opt out of the new law, but they both failed to pass.
The law will likely have a tough road to travel. In order to gain passage as a state law, it will have to trump the federal law. In 2012 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the core of the Affordable Care Act is constitutional.