Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Right to Be Illin'

It should be obvious I support the recently-signed health care bill. I have lived the freelance life before, and I have a lot of friends who live in that weird twilight world of insufficient or nonexistent coverage (and by twilight, I mean "shades of gray ignored by the rest of the world", not "sparkly vampires"). I would like to see a strong public option and more comprehensive plan, but I am willing to take these first steps forward.

So it is with raised eyebrows that I see that our state's attorney general, Rob McKenna, is going to court over the bill, citing it as unconstitutional. It's an interesting approach, but I wish he wouldn't drag the rest of the state in along with him. He's cheesed off a large number of people (including our previous attorney general, who is now governor), though our sweetly conservative Seattle Times is trying to give him cover.

I'm not going to go after McKenna as a conservative - he strikes me as being all over the place, and in some places (like wanting to release the names of people who sign petitions) is more liberal than I. And I severely doubt that this is the political suicide some worthy heads are calling it, though I don't think that re-opening the Medicare D "Donut-Hole" and making the supposed 500,000 uninsured Washingtonians uninsured once more is a strong platform for re-election.

But I do think he's on thin ice, constitutionally. The argument that requiring health insurance is unconstitutional? That strikes me as a bit wobbly. I mean, if he manages to get that, I'm looking forward to seeing him fighting just as hard to repeal home-owner's insurance and car insurance (particularly since I once got mightily dinged for not presenting proper insurance paperwork at a traffic stop).

In the meantime, I'm looking at the current state budget hole and wonder if this is the best spending of time and effort from his office.

More later,

Update: So there is a Facebook page for Washington Tax Payers [sic] OPT OUT of Rob McKenna's lawsuit [sic]. In two days it has 14k people on it. I was going to make a joke about how just about anything could get 14,000 people, but a quick check of "I Like Pie" only has 5000 supporters. What's the deal with that?