Just under a million Missouri voters braved 102-degree heat Tuesday to cast ballots exempting the state’s residents from Obamacare mandates. The verdict on the nationalized health care scheme could not have been more clear: More than 71 percent chose to tell the federal government to stop meddling with their personal health care choices.
Missouri state Sen. Jane Cunningham introduced the legislation that placed the Health Care Freedom Act before voters. This act nullifies any statute that attempts to “compel, directly or indirectly, any person, employer or health care provider to participate in any health care system.” Obamacare’s defenders insist the federal health care law trumps Proposition C under the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause, which is ironic considering the utter disregard for constitutional authority that went into drafting Obamacare itself. Leftist lawyers are already forum shopping for an activist judge willing to overturn the public will. Even if successful in some courtroom, Tuesday’s vote stands as conclusive evidence that Obamacare has already lost in the highest court of all - that of public opinion. As Mrs. Cunningham put it, “Missourians didn’t just send a message, they picked up a megaphone and shouted to Washington, D.C., to Congress and Obama.”
Not surprisingly, Democrats have been working hard to downplay Tuesday’s significance. The only reason the referendum vote was held during the less important primary season is that Democratic state senators used a filibuster threat to keep the measure off the November ballot. In advance of the vote, Democrats claimed that turnout would be meager and the final result not truly representative of the public mood. Their predictions proved unfounded as hundreds of thousands more voters turned out compared to the 2008 primary.
Tuesday’s result was also universal. The proposition won handily in 111 of Missouri’s 114 counties. As Mrs. Cunningham explained to The Washington Times, the measure’s broad appeal came in reaction to the arrogance of Washington officials. “Missourians really felt that the government ignored their voices during the debate on the federal law.”
The White House no longer has the luxury of turning a deaf ear to the cries of Obamacare opponents. Twenty-one states have filed suit to block the federal mandates as unconstitutional, with Virginia Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli earlier this week racking up a key procedural win on his lawsuit. In addition, anti-Obamacare initiatives will be on the November ballot in Arizona and Oklahoma, giving more people a platform from which they can voice their discontent. Of course, the most effective way to send a message to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. would be to evict the politicians who voted for Obamacare and deny the president his Democratic majority on Capitol Hill.
Members of Congress wishing to keep their jobs in November ought to think seriously about repealing the president’s misguided power grab.