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August 12, 2011

Johanns Comments on Health Care Law Ruling

WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Mike Johanns (R-Neb.) today issued the following statement regarding the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that the individual mandate provision of the health care law requiring every American to purchase health insurance or pay a penalty is unconstitutional:

"Today's decision that the individual mandate is unconstitutional is yet another blow to the ill-fated Obamacare. I've been saying all along that the ill-conceived law is unconstitutional. I have also called for it to be expedited to the Supreme Court for review and welcome this decision that should provide the momentum needed for the Supreme Court to consider the case.

"Throughout the health care debate, I heard loud and clear from Nebraskans that the federal government does not have the authority to force them to purchase a product. President Obama and the Democrats in Congress forced a partisan bill into law and ignored the American people and the Constitution. Health care reform is far too important to Americans to do in a reckless, unconstitutional and partisan manner and I am pleased with this ruling.”

Background:

- The three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals who ruled today was comprised of two Democrat appointees and one Republican. The panel upheld the rest of the law.

 - In January 2011, a Florida judge ruled in favor of Nebraska and 25 other states who filed a lawsuit with the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) declaring the entire health care law unconstitutional. Johanns signed an amicus brief in support of the lawsuit. The Administration subsequently appealed this decision to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, setting up today’s ruling.

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