Voiding Federal Health Care Regulations (Audio)
By Jenifer Jones
The state Senate is discussing a bill that makes South Dakota exempt from certain federal health care regulations. Senate Bill 137 voids any law made by Congress that interferes with a person's right to choose their personal physician or health care plan, or imposes any fine for declining to purchase coverage. Senator Gordon Howie of Rapid City is a sponsor of the bill.
"Those of us who are supporting this bill believe that it's an opportunity to stand up for the constitutional rights we've been given," Howie says.
Opponents say the measure could cost the state thousands of dollars in litigation fees. Senator Ben Nesselhuf of Vermillion says it would be devastating to the state's insurance industry.
"I imagine if this were to hold up, and that were to pass on the federal level, the first thing we'd be doing is running back here, calling a special session to repeal this," Nesselhuf says.
The Senate takes up the issue again after it receives a fiscal note from the Legislative Research Council.
Member stations can download the audio file here.