Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson


OLYMPIA — Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna issued the following statement today regarding the decision of a federal judge in Virginia that a portion of the federal health care law is unconstitutional:

“Today’s decision validates the constitutional question that 21 states have raised about the individual health insurance mandate. The Court found that Congress's attempt to force Americans to purchase private insurance ‘exceeds the constitutional boundaries of congressional power.’ As we’ve said throughout this case, health care reform is critically important but must be done in a way that respects the constitutional rights reserved by the people to the states and themselves. Today’s decision affirms that point of view.”

The multi-state lawsuit filed by 20 states, including Washington, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) and several individuals, will be heard on Dec. 16 in U.S. District Court in Florida. The plaintiffs in that case are Florida, South Carolina, Nebraska, Texas, Utah, Louisiana, Alabama, Colorado, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Washington, Idaho, South Dakota, Indiana, North Dakota, Mississippi, Nevada, Arizona, Georgia, Alaska, and NFIB.

Today’s decision regards a separate case, filed by Virginia’s Attorney General, against the health care law.



Janelle Guthrie, AGO Communications Director, (360) 586-0725