A Republican lawmaker in South Carolina has introduced legislation that would send state and federal officials to jail for implementing the Affordable Care Act.
According to U.S News & World Report, the proposal, which has been has been prepared by state Rep. Bill Chumley (R) for next year’s legislative session, threatens state officials with up to two years in jail and a $1,000 fine for enforcing the law. Federal officials could be sent to jail for five years and be fined $5,000 for enacting the legislation.
“I think we’re within our rights to do this,” Chumley said. “It’s an obligation, I swore an oath to uphold the Constitution and protect the people.”
Chumley said he came up with the bill following the formation of a “little study committee” that included lawyers, doctors and retired political science professors, as well as state Sen. Lee Bright (R), who is reportedly proposing a similar bill.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled the law — originally dubbed “Obamacare” as a slight against President Barack Obama — was constitutional on June 28. This led to federal House Republicans passing a number of bills calling for it to be repealed. While those efforts have failed, several GOP governors have also said they would refuse to follow the high court’s ruling.
Last month, a group of Wisconsin lawmakers also said they would support nullifying the law and arresting federal officials for trying to enact it. One of them, state Rep. Chris Kapenga (R) openly paid little mind to the court’s decision.
“Just because Obama was re-elected does not mean he’s above the constitution,” Kapenga said.
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