In what he dubbed the crowning achievement of his life’s work, Nevada Independent American Party attorney general candidate Joel Hansen filed last week what he said is the most comprehensive lawsuit against the health care law signed by President Barack Obama earlier this year.
Unlike separate suits filed by Virginia and a joint suit by several states that Hansen contends are too focused on the 10th Amendment, Hansen’s suit alleges the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act violates a plethora of amendments: the First, the Third through Fifth, the Ninth, 10th and 13th.
For those keeping track at home, those are the amendments that, respectively: regulate freedom of religion, the press assembly and petition; ban the forced quartering of soldiers; prohibit unreasonable searches and seizures; guarantee due process, ban double jeopardy and set rules for eminent domain; ensures fundamental rights; limit the power of the federal government; and abolish slavery.
What does slavery and the quartering of soldiers have to do with health care reform, you ask? According Hansen, the health care law constitutes “Peonage - the coercing an individual to work off a debt by threat of legal sanction.” He says that is against the 13th amendment, which banned slavery and indentured servitude. As for the fourth amendment, Hansen says there’s a “right to privacy protected as a liberty right” under the fourth and fifth amendments.
Standing on the steps of the federal courthouse, the Brigham Young University alum (who has been a lawyer for 32 years and whose profile says he has represented Nevadans who want to be “paid in honest money - - gold and silver United States dollars- -instead of worthless Federal Reserve notes,”) unveiled his masterpiece reported The Las Vegas Review-Journal.
“This isn’t about states’ rights,” he said. “It’s about individuals rights. It violates the First Amendment because a lot of people are pro-life and this law forces them to contribute to (paying for) abortions. That’s a violation of religious freedom.”
The suit, available below, cites Bible passages as if they are legal statutes and makes the argument that the plaintiffs are religious Christians, and that part of their sincerely held religious belief is that “all forms of Socialism are abhorrent and contrary to [the] Christian faith.” Hansen writes that he believes that “Socialism and its twin brothers Communism, Fascism, are State/Civic religions” and that “Obamcare[sic]/PPACA, an admittedly socialistic and compelled system of belief, violates the free exercise clause of the First Amendment.”
But if this whole suing the government thing doesn’t quite work out, Hansen is probably prepared for the worst. According to a Nevada Families Eagle Forum newsletter, edited by Hansen’s sister Janine, the world is heading up the creek without a paddle anyhow. She presents readers with a “minuscule sampling of the myriad of warnings available in the media and on the Internet” about how the world is going to hell, and instructs her audience to first go to their Bible and then start stacking up on the canned goods.
The Justice Department vowed to “vigorously defend” the health care law against legal challenges in a statement issued in March.
Read the suit below: