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Liberty University to file suit on health care overhaul

Anita Kumar

Liberty University, the private Virginia school founded by the late Rev. Jerry Falwell, announced today that it will file a lawsuit challenging the federal health care legislation as soon as President Obama signs the bill passed by the House last night.

"Congress does not have unlimited authority to regulate private actions,'' said Mathew Staver, dean of Liberty University School of Law and founder of Liberty Counsel, which will file the lawsuit. "If the Constitution does not give Congress the power to act, then Congress cannot act. Congress clearly lacks the constitutional authority to force individuals to have, or private businesses to provide, health insurance. Congress' attempt to force health insurance coverage on the nation is a stunning example of what Congress cannot do."

Liberty University calls itself the largest and fastest-growing Christian university in the world. The Lynchburg-based school enrolls more than 50,000 students.

Staver said the the lawsuit will include other individuals, private nonprofit and for-profit businesses and organizations, and religious institutions, but Liberty will be the lead plantiff. It will filed as soon as tomorrow.

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli also has said he will challenge the constitutionality of the health-care bill passed by Congress. Staver said that he supports Cuccinelli's actions and that he plans to speak to his office this afternoon.

Staver said the taxing and spending clause and the commerce clause are the two primary provisions of the constitution that enable Congress to act, but the health care bill does not fall under either of them.

"If Congress had the power to force each person to have health insurance, then individual liberty would be meaningless,'' he said. "No matter the desires of President Obama and the Democratic leadership, there are some things Congress cannot do. No one wants the federal government or a pencil-pushing bureaucrat in Washington policing private medical decisions. No one wants IRS agents to become the health insurance police. The threat to liberty posed by the healthcare bill goes beyond healthcare. If Congress can get away with this expansive power grab, then individual liberty and state sovereignty will vanish."

By Anita Kumar  |  March 22, 2010; 11:25 AM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar , General Assembly 2010 , House of Delegates , Ken Cuccinelli , Robert F. McDonnell , State Senate  
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Comments

Liberty University? What a surprise that they should be in favor of the Republican position of doing nothing in all of this.

What pray tell is their standing to bring such a suit?

Well they are only wasting right wing money, so who cares?

By the way, if it has not already done so, the Federal Government should pull their tax exemption for donations.

Posted by: yenta1 | March 22, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

In the case of the Falwell family, the acorn never failed to fall far from the oak tree.

Posted by: TomPaine2 | March 22, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

I would pay $100 to defaecate on Jerry Falwell's grave.

Posted by: kenk3 | March 22, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Gov. McDonnell should invite Mathew Staver and Glenn Beck to address the General Assembly and call for a vote to succeed from the Union.

It would make these people happy and the rest of us would be allowed to live in a progressive America.

Posted by: Gracefulboomer | March 22, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

A would easily pay $1000 to use a water cannon on Liberty University student body and faculty.

Posted by: kenk3 | March 22, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Nothing about Ken Cuccinelli, Liberty U or any others of this dark ilk impress me as anything but backward, hateful and at times, racist

Posted by: fairness3 | March 22, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

This is the problem we have in this country right now. We have, in front of us, a major change to the way America works. Whether you agree or disagree with universal health care (I disagree), we should all be looking the real issues here not the shiny keys the Obama administration keep jingling at us. The fact that you guys are more concerned that Liberty University and the Falwells are against it than the chief issues, disturbs me. Have we become that complacent? This bill will increase government spending, there's no doubt about that, it will also stagnate the health care industry. It's a slap in the face to mostly free market system that we have been so fortunate to enjoy. Further, it increases the power and reach of the government. There are many ways the same goals could have been reached without universal health care but the dems want universal health care shoved down the throats of the American people at all costs and without regard to what’s actually best for the country as a whole. No one in this country wants people to be without health care, I promise you that. We would all like to have that security blanket, but it could have been and I believe ultimately will be done, without the negative provisions and spending with this bill and others like it. We gave up a lot of rights with the Patriot Act; Clinton sent our jobs to Mexico and indirectly overseas, and now we are giving away another large portion of the rights so many of our fathers and grandfathers fought to keep. We already have several taxpayer funded health care programs, expanding the scope of one of these to cover the 20 million people who are not covered by health insurance and it could have accomplished the same goal at a cost of only $130 Billion dollars a year (I base that assumption at an annual cost of $6500 per person which is very reasonable) versus the actual cost of the health care bill which could cost us well over that number without cutting a single program or cutting Medicare/Medicaid benefits. This approach also avoids additional taxes. Couple that with Tort reform and a bill that would ensure that coverage is not lost when the person gets sick and we are getting there. Pass a bill that separates health care from the employer and makes it portable similar to automobile insurance and we have a program that reduces health care costs by putting it in the free market. Is it a perfect plan? No, but I believe it would have been a much more robust approach and one that would have been more likely to have gained public approval from both sides. I’ll leave you with this question, if the majority of Americans polled are not in favor of the universal health care bill, to the point of many promising not to reelect officials who vote in favor of it on both sides of the aisle, where is the incentive to risk losing the career you spent decades building? What do they gain? Who’s providing it?

Posted by: jmj6879 | March 22, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

So lets see; I loose my job with my current employer and then I'm forced with COBRA at $700.00 a month when I was paying $100.00 a month for the same insurance. The Republicans had a say with the bill passed by the House and Senate. During the Bush years no one really cared about healthcare reform.. It was Tax cuts, the War on terror and Greed.

I'm sorry but suing the Federal Government because you hate the current President is rather stupid... I thought VA had a huge budget deficit anyways..Why continue to spend money we don't have... Everyone deserves decent healthcare... We are a wealthy country with a lower case healthcare system...

Posted by: coathe0103 | March 22, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

jmj6879 said "This bill...will also stagnate the health care industry."

*******
Do you promise, really, really? Oh joy, Oh rapture! Sir or madam, I do not care if the health care industry "stagnates". I have absolutely no sympathy for Big Pharma and Big Insurance. I'm sure you think they are just good capitalists making an honest buck, but I think they are out-of-control, greedy thieves making billions of dollars from sick, vulnerable Americans. It is their unabashed greed that made health insurance reform a necessity. I hope this bill reins them both in. As for me, I'll take Big Government over Big Pharma and Big Insurance any day of the week. If you want to call this socialism, so be it. I call it common sense, plain and simple.

Posted by: mydog2 | March 22, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Surely Liberty University doesn't take tax-free donations do they? If so, then please, take a heaping dose of shut-the-f-up!

Posted by: AHappyWarrior | March 22, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Its mandatory for everyone to have auto insurance, so. . .what's the deal? Liberty people just want the US to be a Theocracy. They are nuts.

Posted by: GenuineRisk | March 22, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

If you think for a second that clamping down on one of the largest industries in the country will benefit you, you better think about that a little longer. Count how many nurses, doctors, cleaning crew, etc etc work in your city and imagine 10% of them becoming unemployed as a result of cuts to the current system. I don't even expect you to understand the number of employees that are directly affected by the health care industry as a whole but I assure you, any major cuts to that industry could impact our economy in a big way.. Good luck with socialism.. it seems to have worked out well in Cuba, Russia and China. Hell, even they don't want to be socialists any more.

Posted by: jmj6879 | March 22, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Doctors, nurses, and cleaning crew losing their jobs because of health insurance reform? Sorry, I don't buy that. Most health care worker/employee organizations support the reform. Additionally, there aren't enough doctors and nurses now -- I seriously doubt that any will lose their jobs. In fact, the health insurance reform bill will likely create jobs, according to studies and reports by the (bipartisan) Congressional Budget Office. But of course the CBO reports wouldn't hold any significance to you -- you're too busy making up your own facts.

Posted by: mydog2 | March 22, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Doctors, nurses, and cleaning crew losing their jobs because of health insurance reform? Sorry, I don't buy that. Most health care worker/employee organizations support the reform. Additionally, there aren't enough doctors and nurses now -- I seriously doubt that any will lose their jobs. In fact, the health insurance reform bill will likely create jobs, according to studies and reports by the (bipartisan) Congressional Budget Office. But of course the CBO reports wouldn't hold any significance to you -- you're too busy making up your own facts.

Posted by: mydog2 | March 22, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

_________________--

AU Contraire -- My consulting contract with a major pharmaceutical company has been extended for another year -- THANKS CONGRESS...
But I do think it is FUNNY THAT THE CHRISTIANS are going to fight against the RIGHT TO LIVE -- I GUESS ONLY CERTAIN CHRISTIANS ARE ALLOWED THAT PRIVILEDGE...WWJD...

Posted by: racerdoc | March 22, 2010 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Liberty University, purportedly a CHRISTIAN institution. Blessed are the rich and healthy.

Posted by: dog_canyon | March 22, 2010 11:35 PM | Report abuse

Wow..so I guess it's okay to be hateful-water canon students,crap on someone's grave-as long as your part of this enlightened elitist left wing group taking over our country "for our own good-because you are sooo smart you know what's best for all of us." Save it! I've seen it at the University-you liberals are the first ones to throw someone under the bus if it in anyway impacts you. And blessed are the rich (dog canyon), who donate beyond your wildest dreams to the hungry + poor-who donate their time and effort. Is this about jealousy? I don't care what you say--I'm not complying-never!!

Posted by: kendricc | March 23, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

I agree that healthcare will add to the spending of the federal government. However, if we are going to get rid of healthcare, I want to get rid of the other mandates too. Let's get rid of social security. We can return the money to everyone who has paid in and call it a day. Screw medicare, too, just give the money back and dissolve the safety net trust funds. Welfare, AFDC, and unemployment payments, they are not necessary. We are a free market economy, we're capitalist. Oh yeah, we won't be building bridges to no where in Alaska. Screw Dick Cheney's oil wells; the US is stopping the war and not paying for them anymore.

And when we have done this guess what...every company now offering health care can stop. Just think how much those rich SOBs will be able to save then. No problem for the rest of us though because we will all be in the same boat, dying from a common cold.

Posted by: mellow_d | March 23, 2010 11:39 PM | Report abuse

This Democratic health care reform is about what you would expect the Reagan Republicans of the 1980s to support. Which shows how the current Republicans have just fallen off the looney edge.

I pay about $600 a year in property taxes to my local charity hospital district to pay for health care for the uninsured. What's wrong with requiring these people to buy their own insurance so that I don't have to pay for their care when they go to the taxpayer supported public hospitals?

Posted by: Provasek | March 24, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Clearly there are a ton of uneducated people that post on here and share their minds regarding issues they are completely ignorant about.


"Its mandatory for everyone to have auto insurance, so. . .what's the deal? Liberty people just want the US to be a Theocracy. They are nuts." by: GenuineRisk

-Yes it is a requirement to have auto insurance if you have a car....It is not a requirement to have a car!!


A would easily pay $1000 to use a water cannon on Liberty University student body and faculty. by: kenk3

I would pay $100 to defaecate on Jerry Falwell's grave. by: Kenk3

&


Gov. McDonnell should invite Mathew Staver and Glenn Beck to address the General Assembly and call for a vote to succeed from the Union. It would make these people happy and the rest of us would be allowed to live in a progressive America. By: Gracefulboomer

-What is your argument...You hate Liberty University, Mathew Staver, and Jerry Falwell? If you had any knowledge about the Constitution you would realize that America was founded on Godly principles that allow for its citizens to be free and not controlled by the government. This Health Care Bill is forcing people to buy a product which is unconstitutional!!

The definition of communism is "a system of social organization in which all economic and social activity is controlled by a totalitarian state dominated by a single and self-perpetuating political party."

The passing of the Health Care Bill and violation of the Constitution is clearly one of many steps our current government is taking to turn America into a communist country.

Did you know that one of the main resources that is funding this Health Care Bill is through student loans.

Did you know that many pro-choice advocates do not support abortion which will be paid for through tax dollars.

Liberty University and Mathew Staver are fighting for what is right and what our great country was established upon. If you would prefer to live in a communist country save your $1100 dollars from defecating and spraying water on those who are fighting for your rights and move to North Korea please. But as for me and the rest of the people who believe in the a free America we will stand for what is right and what the Constitution protects.

Posted by: HomeoftheonceFree | March 24, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

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