by Bob Geary
This just in from the Governor's office: She's put the kibosh on the Republican bill attempting to nullify President Obama's health care reforms (the Affordable Care Act).
[Update: Progressive coalition likes this. Statement is copied after the one from the Gov. Also, you can't veto a bill nowadays and not make a video record of it — also below.]
From Perdue's press secretary —
This afternoon, just before 2 p.m., Gov. Perdue vetoed House Bill 2, "Protect Health Care Freedom."
In signing the veto, the governor made the following statement:
"I'm vetoing HB 2 for three reasons: first of all, House Bill 2 actually is contradictory to the federal constitution. A state can't pass a law that is out of obeyance with federal laws, and this House Bill 2 clearly is.
"Secondly, there are 27 other states that are engaged in this process. It's extraneous to North Carolina. This issue will reach the Supreme Court in a timely manner without North Carolina spending money and energy on it. It's superfluous.
"And third and most importantly, the attorney general and solicitor general have talked to me and the leadership of the General Assembly and explained clearly that there are some unintended consequences of House Bill 2 that dramatically affect our medicaid program, potentially hurting the childrens' health insurance program, attacking our process of requiring uninsured motorists to have insurance, attacking college students for having insurance. And finally the whole issue of unintended consequences — today none of us know what this will mean in two weeks, two months or two years.
"This is an ill-conceived piece of legislation that's not good for the people of North Carolina. Therefore I veto it."
HB-2 was among the bills of "dubious constitutionality" — I was being generous — that I described in a column this week.
And from the N.C. Justice Center:
Statement: Health Care Advocates Laud Perdue's Veto as "Refreshing"
NC Health Access Coalition says the veto shows Gov. Perdue is "focused on a better future for North Carolinians" instead of "engaging in political games"
RALEIGH (March 5, 2011) — In a statement issued this afternoon, the NC Health Access Coalition lauded Gov. Beverly Perdue's veto of an ill-conceived anti-health care bill.
The statement reads:
"For those concerned about jobs and affordable health insurance, Governor Perdue’s action in vetoing House Bill 2 is refreshing.
Instead of engaging in political games about “repealing” federal laws, the Governor’s eyes are firmly focused on a better future for North Carolinians. The Governor’s vision is of a North Carolina where insurance companies can no longer deny people health coverage because of pre-existing health conditions, where tax credits and a newly competitive market make insurance affordable and cost less, and where small businesses can finally get the same deals on health coverage plans that large companies enjoy."