Three resolutions, SJR 58, SJR 59 and SJR 64, expressing opposition to the health care legislation currently moving through Congress, including a resolution offering Oklahomans an opportunity to opt-out of the mandates imposed by Obamacare, passed the Senate today. Senate President Pro Tem Glenn Coffee (R-OKC) offered two resolutions, and Senator Dan Newberry (R-Tulsa) sponsored the opt-out resolution.
“This is an important debate to have in Oklahoma today,” said Coffee. “Washington has turned a deaf ear to the people this monstrosity would most directly effect.
“Our purpose is to make our voices heard from the Heartland to the Washington Beltway,” Coffee said.
“Turning our health care over to the federal government is a serious problem that deserves serious discussion, even at the state level,” Coffee continued. “Just this week, the premier of Newfoundland in Canada came to the United States for a medical procedure, saying ‘it was my heart, my choice, and my health. I did not sign my right away to get the best possible health care when I entered politics.’
“And Oklahomans shouldn’t sign their rights away for the best possible health care because of politics,” Coffee said.
“Oklahomans from all backgrounds are very concerned about the impact of Obamacare on their ability to access health care,” said Senator Newberry. “This is an opportunity for the people of Oklahoma to voice their opinion on the health care plans coming from our nation’s leaders in Washington.”
SJR 58 by Senator Coffee petitions the federal government to opt-out of health care mandates, and offers waivers to the state Medicaid program passed 35-11.
SJR 59 by Senator Newberry is a constitutional amendment prohibiting forced participation in the Federal health care system passed 30-16.
SJR 64 by Senator Coffee directs the Attorney General to file a suit on behalf of the State of Oklahoma to prevent federal health care legislation from taking effect passed 29-16.
“These resolutions clearly give voice to the hundreds of thousands of Oklahomans who have opposed the fiscally unsustainable mandates that would result if Washington prevails in passing their misguided proposal,” said Coffee.
“Aside from the direct expense to business and consumers, the federal health care bill would blow an atomic hole in an already strained Oklahoma state budget, a hole from which we may never dig out from,” he continued.
“This is a bipartisan concern,” Coffee noted. “Just last week, the Democrat controlled Virginia state senate passed a bill that would block the implementation of the individual mandate of Obamacare in that state, and many leading Oklahoma Democrats, including some statewide elected officials, have expressed their concern. In fact, just today Congressman Dan Boren said passing the Democrat health plan would be a ‘worst case scenario.’
“I had hoped more Democrats would join us, but I thank those who joined all 25 Republicans present in sending a bipartisan message to Washington that Oklahomans don’t care for Obamacare,” Coffee concluded.