Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli claimed victory against the federal government in the wake of a federal judge’s ruling that the individual mandate in the health care reform law signed by President Barack Obama earlier this year is unconstitutional.
“We won the first round in this particular fight, but we know there are others to come,” Cuccinelli told reporters in a news conference Monday afternoon.“Certainly this was a peaceful attempt for noble purposes to abridge the rights of the American people,” Cuccinelli said. “I’ve said all along this lawsuit is not about health care, it’s about liberty.”
“Now we have beaten it back here in Virginia, of course we will see where the final decision brings us,” Cuccinelli added. “But if we cross this line with health care now, this unconstitutional line, where the government can force us to buy a private product and say it’s for our own good, then we’ll have given the government the power to force us to buy other products.”
“There are better solutions then giving up our freedom,” Cuccinelli said, calling the bill a major victory for the Tea Party in Virginia.
Cuccinell said that Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) has played a role in the discussion over the lawsuit, emphasizing “the need for speed” in the suit because of the impact the health care law has on business.
Judge Henry E. Hudson, a George W. Bush appointee, ruled that the “At its core, this dispute is not simply about regulating the business of insurance-or crafting a scheme of universal health insurance coverage-it’s about an individual’s right to choose to participate.”
“The outcome of this case has significant public policy implications,” Hudson wrote. “And the final word will undoubtedly reside with a higher court.”
The White House said in a blog post that they “disagree with the ruling issued today in Virginia and the Department of Justice is considering its appeal options.”
“There have been many rulings on court cases regarding health reform and we know there will be many more,” wrote the White House’s Stephanie Cutter. “In the end, the Affordable Care Act will prevail and the American people will enjoy the benefits of reform.”
Watch the video of Cuccinelli below: