It was with great disappointment that I received the news Thursday morning that the Affordable Care Act had been upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Two years ago Congress enacted the health care law that, among other things, required every individual to purchase a product simply because he or she was alive. Florida immediately filed a lawsuit claiming the Act was an overreach of authority by the federal government. Eventually, more than half of the states in the nation joined the lawsuit.
While the Court upheld the law, its ruling clearly vindicated our basic arguments. In writing the opinion for the majority, Chief Justice John Roberts stated that the federal government has no authority to require people to buy health insurance under the interstate commerce clause in the Constitution. He goes on to write that the law is constitutional based only on the government’s power to tax people who chose not to buy insurance. We also prevailed on our claim that Congress can’t coerce states into accepting massive and unaffordable expansion of the Medicaid program.
What we are left with is a health care law that is a nothing more than a $4 billion tax on the American people, mostly the middle class, and that’s killing jobs, increasing the deficit, and drowning our health care system in a sea of bureaucracy and regulations. And, as we know from the Court’s opinion, the law was sold to the American people based on false claims that the individual mandate is not a tax.
The battle over the Affordable Care Act is not over.
The American people, who now have the truth about this health care law, will have the final judgment.
This week, my Office of Statewide Prosecution and the Civil and Medicaid Fraud Divisions, worked closely with the Drug Enforcement Administration in helping to shut down more pill mills in Florida.
The operation, dubbed “Operation Pill Street Blues,” resulted in the arrest of seven doctors and seven clinic owners, including one who was a firemen. They were charged on state racketeering violations.
The seven doctors were responsible for dispensing over two million Oxycodone tablets within a period of a year.
The cost of prescription drug abuse and prescription drug trafficking is people’s lives. Seven Floridians die each day as the result of prescription drug abuse.
I have worked to toughen laws to shut down pills mills in Florida. We will not stop until every pill mill in this state is shuttered up.
I want to thank the DEA, the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office, the Vero Beach Police Department, members my staff, and the many other state and local agencies for their hard work in closing these clinics and putting these “doctors” out of business.