Wyoming State Legislation Tries to Criminalize Government Health Care

Even though states can't override federal laws, it looks like the health care bill is sparking enough right-wing vitriol to make them try. When the new, more-conservative Wyoming state legisllature convenes tomorrow, 13 lawmakers will introduce a bill to criminalize implementation of the government health care bill in the state, with practitioners facing up to five years in prison and $5000 in fines.

In other words: even if it passes, it won't hold up in courts, but 13 legislators would like to make health care a felony.

Meanwhile, Wyoming Governor Matt Mead wants the state to join the lawsuit against federal health care, according the the Casper Star-Tribune. The state legislature is likely to create a health litigation fund, which Mead said in a press release that he supports.

Washington Post's Ezra Klein has characterized the Wyoming bill as one step closer to freaked-out, potentially dangerous constituents, calling his column “When opposition to health care stops being polite and starts getting scary.” On Friday, one day before the tragedy in Arizona, he criticized the inflammatory language used by conservatives about the health care bill.

Republicans have introduced and called it, as Sen. Jon Kyl did, "a stunning threat to liberty." They've told their supporters, as Sen, Chuck Grassley did, that they're right to fear that the health-care bill "determines if you're going to pull the plug on grandma." This is not merely legislation that they have some technical or philosophical disagreements with. It is, in the wordsof Speaker John Boehner, "a monstrosity."

Read more at the Washington Post.


AlterNet / By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd

Posted at January 10, 2011, 5:32am

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