States Step Up Legislative, Legal Action Against Federal Overhaul

State legislatures are considering bills to undermine the sweeping health overhaul. In addition, a Virginia court promises speedy action in a pending legal challenge. And, of course, the concept of "waivers" continues to draw interest. 

The Associated Press: Panel OKs Bill To Block Health Overhaul In Minn.
Legislation that would repeal a Medicaid health care expansion ordered by Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton has cleared a Senate panel. The bill from Republican Senate Health and Human Services Committee Chairman David Hann would also block a federal mandate to buy health insurance as part of the health care overhaul (1/26).

The Associated Press: SD House Panel Rejects Health Care Nullifying Bill
A bill that would declare the federal health care overhaul unconstitutional has failed in a South Dakota House committee. The bill declares that any federal legislation that "interferes with the right of any person" to choose their health coverage is unconstitutional (1/26).

The New York Times: Virginia: Quick Ruling Promised On Challenge To Health Law
A federal appeals court in Richmond, Va., announced Wednesday that it would expedite its consideration of a lower court ruling against a key provision of the Obama health care act (Sack, 1/26).

Bloomberg: Arizona May Touch Off Flood Of States Asking Obama to Allow Medicaid Cuts
President Barack Obama faces a new challenge from deficit-plagued states over Medicaid costs just as he squares off with Republicans trying to repeal his 2010 health-care law, which extends coverage to 32 million Americans. Arizona Governor Jan Brewer asked for U.S. permission on Jan. 25 to reduce Medicaid eligibility and drop coverage for 280,000 people. That would save $541.5 million for the state, which projects a $1.2 billion budget deficit for the coming fiscal year (Wechsler and Palmeri, 1/27).

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