Lawsuit challenges Missouri health care measure

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June 28, 2010

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JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri: Last week, opponents of the proposed Missouri Health Care Freedom Amendment filed a lawsuit with the Cole County Circuit Court. The measure, which is scheduled to appear on the August 3, 2010 statewide ballot, is poised to be the first health care related measure to be voted on by voters this year. The legislatively-referred constitutional amendment was developed directly following the approval of a federal health care bill into law. The measure was approved by both houses in early May 2010 and certified by state officials for the statewide ballot.[1]

According to reports the lawsuit argues that the proposed measure violates the Missouri Constitution because of the way - as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment - in which it was certified for the ballot.[2] Specifically plaintiffs cite a constitutional prohibition against bills containing multiple subjects. Originally the measure addressed procedures for "insurance companies to voluntarily dissolve. It was amended to include a section stating that people cannot be compelled to have health insurance or penalized for paying their health bills with their own money."[3]

A hearing date has yet to be scheduled.

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