Efforts already underway in Colorado to blunt federal health care reforms | VailDaily.com

Efforts already underway in Colorado to blunt federal health care reforms

Jessica Fender
The Denver Post

Coloradans will likely be asked in November to blunt the impact of federal health-insurance reform with a state constitutional amendment that would attempt to undo some of what Congress is trying to pass.

Jon Caldara of the Independence Institute said Tuesday that he is still working on the language for his proposal, which would then need signatures from 76,047 voters to make the ballot. But he intends to find out in the fall whether voters want to stop the federal government from dictating insurance requirements to Coloradans.

At the same time, a freshman state lawmaker says she’ll push her legislative colleagues to opt the state out of the congressional health care reforms.

The state measures would be two of at least 14 similar plans being advanced by conservatives and libertarians across the country. Courts will likely have to decide whether states have the authority to trump or opt out of a federal mandate, but the proposals underscore how the health-insurance debate is already moving from Washington to state legislatures.

Caldara said he doesn’t want to miss his chance to affect how the federal legislation he and other critics call “Obama care” will take hold in Colorado. Some of the provisions could take effect as early as 2011.

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“Colorado has a right to decide how we choose to deal with health care,” Caldara said. “And it is my goal to make sure that Washington doesn’t jam Obamacare down the throats of Coloradans.”

Democrats cautioned Tuesday that critics should wait and see what the final bill produced in Washington includes. Senate and House versions must still be reconciled before anything passes in final form.

Read more: http://www.denverpost.com/ci_14090779#ixzz0bD51swRx

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