Vander Plaats would invoke 10th amendment, if health care bill passes

This summer Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats said Iowa should assert its sovereignty and run its own health care system.  Here’s part of the Radio Iowa story from August:

“We’re a sovereign state and the federal government is just getting great at controlling us with our money. We need to understand the federal government doesn’t have money of its own. It’s coming from our citizens. It goes into the federal government and they come back with the controls and what we’re seeing is more and more mandates,” Vander Plaats said. “In particular on this health care deal, as it gets passed onto the states, it has the possibility of bankrupting the states.”

If elected governor, Vander Plaats would advocate taking all the taxes Iowans pay to support Medicare — and Medicaid – and having the state run both programs.

“If you left the Medicaid and Medicare dollars that you’re taking from our citizens within the state of Iowa and let the State of Iowa design its health care delivery system, I think we’d be way better off than what the federal government has currently,” Vander Plaats said.

 Today, Vander Plaats expanded on those thoughts.  Read the campaign news release below:

DES MOINES – With congressional Democrats pushing closer to passage of a government-run health care system, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats said today that he would invoke the Constitution’s 10th Amendment to protect Iowans from new federal mandates.
 In remarks prepared for a campaign eventwithyoung professionals at Smokey Row coffeehouse in the Sherman Hill neighborhood, Vander Plaats said Iowa “needs a governor willing to stand against runaway federalism.”
 “I talk to so many Iowans who are fed up with the federal government trying to grab more and more power over their lives and take more and more of their money.  There’s no clearer example of that power grab than the Democrats’ plan to take over our health care system lock, stock and barrel,” said Vander Plaats, noting that Iowa consistently ranks high in health care delivery and very low in federal reimbursement. “Frankly, there’s no reason for us to just sit here and let the federal government run roughshod over the public’s will.  If that legislation passes, I’ll show the federal government that the states still have a say in things.”
 Vander Plaats continued, “A Virginia House delegate named Christopher Peace summed it up best last week when he wrote in the Richmond Post-Dispatch that “the American people have ignored an enormous consolidation of power and authority in our federal government over the past year and, some could argue, the past 20 years.  … But the nation is now experiencing a turning away from big government — and this ebb may well revive the intended constitutional government.”
 Vander Plaats noted that “much like the Second Amendment is designed to protect the citizen from the encroachments of the government, so stands the 10th Amendment in defense of the states (and their citizens).”
  “In other words, powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. I would argue that a federal take-over of our health care system is not a power delegated to the United States,” he said.  “I’ll be a governor who reminds Congress and the President that there’s a reason the constitution has a 10th amendment.”
 As governor, Vander Plaats’ legislative agenda would include a measure modeled after a Virginia proposal that states, “No law shall restrict a person’s natural right and power of contract to secure the blessings of liberty to choose private health care systems or private plans. No law shall interfere with the right of a person or entity to pay for lawful medical services to preserve life or health, nor shall any law impose a penalty, tax, fee, or fine, of any type, to decline or to contract for health care coverage or to participate in any particular health care system or plan, except as required by a court where an individual or entity is a named party in a judicial dispute. Nothing herein shall be construed to expand, limit or otherwise modify any determination of law regarding what constitutes lawful medical services within the Commonwealth.”
 Vander Plaats said he would support legislation that firearms, firearms accessories and ammunition made and retained in Iowa are “not subject to federal law or regulation under the authority of Congress to regulate interstate commerce.” He also would urge Iowans to launch the process to amend the federal constitution to include a balanced budget amendment.
  “Virginia has the great names in America’s revolution against an oppressive government – names like Patrick Henry, James Madison, Thomas Jefferson and Edmund Randolph.  Today’s Iowans are no less patriotic and just as willing to stand up for their personal freedoms. We do not have to let the federal government walk all over us if we elect a governor who will stand against the modern-day tyranny of crushing federal debt brought on a federal government that takes our money and spends it to control our lives,” he said.

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.


  1. Iowa Cynic says

    What a clown. This guy has no comprehension of the way our government works. Congress is charged with providing for the general welfare and with regulating interstate commerce. The later clause is interpreted quite broadly, and there is no way healthcare in an entire state escapes being defined as “interstate commerce.” The Tenth Amendment plays no role here. Any pre-law student just out of high school would be able to explain that to Mr VDP. Instead he tries to stir up the uneducated among the teabaggers (all of them?) by using words that don’t mean what he or they think they mean.

  2. The State of WA, AG Rob McKenna, just filed suit for our state against the unconstitutional aspects of the health care reform bill. I am glad that he did and I, along with over 55% of citizens in Western WA alone, support McKenna and stand behind his decision to protect the rights of the people he works for.

    The Federal Govt. has no right to “mandate” or force Americans to buy health care plans or anything else in this country. Enough is enough damn it. We are fed up and will defend our constitutional rights to the end.

    NO to health care. It is unconstitutional and Americans do not want it until it is a plan that is founded on solid constitutional grounds.


  1. […] Amendment of the U.S. Constitution to shield Iowa from socialist health care reform.Vander Plaats is quoted at O. Kay Henderson’s always must-read blog:“I talk to so many Iowans who are fed up with the federal government trying to grab more and more […]