Tea Party Patriots, in conjunction with Health Care Compact Alliance, have launched a nationwide campaign to enact interstate Health Care Compact across the nation. With more than 36 states currently pursuing the initiative, we are proud to announce that Ohio is one of the states leading the way.
Making the Health Care Compact a reality in 2012
Last June, the Health Care Compact (HCC) was introduced in the Senate (SB 189). It was put on hold, so the legislative initiative would not confuse voters or undermine the efforts to pass Issue 3, the Ohio Health Care Freedom Amendment.
Now that Issue 3 has passed with a mandate in all 88 counties, and the voters of our state have clearly stated their support for health care freedom in Ohio, it is time to take the second step in securing our health care freedom for Ohio with the Ohio Health Care Compact. The legislation is currently in the Insurance, Commerce, and Labor committee, waiting for its first hearing. We need to work together and make the HCC bill a legislative reality.
Understanding the Health Care Compact and how it work
Before we explain the Health Care Compact, it’s important to know that interstate compacts, which is an agreement between two or more states, have existed prior to the US Constitution. Specifically referred to in Article 1, Section 10 of the Constitution, compacts are a very powerful legal tool for states to use – in this case to return the power back to the states and people when it comes to healthcare.
The legislative process for the HCC occurs on two levels. First, the compact must be passed by both the Ohio House and Senate and signed by the governor. Then, it must be ratified by Congress with a simple majority. Once ratified, it becomes federal law and supersedes existing laws, exempting member states from all federal healthcare regulation.
The Texas Policy Institute does an excellent job of explaining the history and legal effects of interstate compacts in its Interstate Compacts in Our Constitution article.
Putting the power of healthcare back into the hands of the state
Acting as a “regulatory shield,” the HCC bill not only removes the constraints and mandates of federal healthcare regulations like the ones in Obamacare, but also gives Ohio lawmakers the ability to develop a healthcare system that suits Ohioans. In essence, it returns the responsibility and authority for healthcare regulation to the states, allowing them to utilize federal funds collected in their state to support their state’s healthcare system.
The beauty of this compact is that it’s non-partisan. The HCC does not answer what type of plan should be implemented or who should be covered. It takes us back to the most fundamental political question of all – who decides? Should it be the federal government or the state of Ohio that decides what is best for Ohioans?
Rooted in the concept of state sovereignty, the HCC opens the door to greater freedom when it comes to our healthcare.
1. Freedom to exempt member states from the mandates and regulations in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010.
2. Freedom for states to design a healthcare system that is responsive to local need and preferences of each state.
3. Freedom for states to re-direct federal tax revenue, which is currently used to fund the federal healthcare system, to the state level, so states can fund the system of their choice.
When the responsibility and authority of healthcare are returned to the state level, the problem is easier to solve, the solution becomes more personal and enforcement of accountability hits closer to home.
What you can do to help
Ohio Tea Party Patriot Groups are working with various tea party, 9.12 and other conservative organizations throughout the state to help get the legislation passed in Ohio. A Health Care Compact Campaign team has been assembled in Ohio. If you would like to help restore our healthcare freedom in Ohio and across the country, please visit www.ohiohealthcarecompact.com.
Additional information about the Health Care Compact
HCC bill language
Ohio HCC legislation
Explanation of the Health Care Compact
Complete FAQ packet for HCC
Eric O’Keefe’s explanation of the Health Care Compact
Health Care Compact website
Health Care Compact Facebook page
Ohio Health Care Compact website
Ohio Health Care Compact Facebook page