Ernst voiced her support for that, as well as supporting legislation that would “nullify” Obamacare in a Iowa State Legislative Candidates survey for Ron Paul’s libertarian-aligned Campaign for Liberty in 2012. It can be viewed here.
The question was: “Will you support legislation to nullify ObamaCare and authorize state and local law enforcement to arrest federal officials attempting to implement the unconstitutional health care scheme known as ObamaCare?” Ernst answered that question as “yes.”
Campaign for Liberty Communications Director Megan Stiles told TPM on Friday that the “yes” answer is what the group is looking for in candidates. Stiles, however, cautioned that the group does not endorse candidates.
"States nullifying federal laws is one way of a check on the balance of federal power," Stiles said. "So that’s an additional way to fight Obamacare. That’s what we’re looking for."
Ideally though, Campaign for Liberty is looking for candidates that sponsor legislation (hence the +/- option on the survey).
Stiles, who wasn’t with the the Campaign for Liberty in 2012, said she would have to get back to TPM on how arrests would be made. She said it would depend on whether what’s being implemented is a state run or federal run healthcare exchange.
"The general idea is that if leaders in the state don’t want to participate in Obamacare then they would nullify the law —as another check on federal power," Stiles said.
Democrats said the survey was just an another example of Ernst being a tea party radical.
"Apparently arresting health officials for giving Iowans access to quality, affordable healthcare is something Joni Ernst believes in. This is just another example of how her radical Tea Party ideas are wrong for Iowa," Iowa Democratic Party spokeswoman Christina Freundlich said in a statement.
In July TPM highlighted that Ernst had previously said that Congress shouldn’t pass laws “that the states would consider nullifying.” Ernst made those comments at a 2013 Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition forum. States can’t nullify federal laws, as The Daily Beast, which first reported the story, noted.
See the survey below:
The TPM Polltracker average gives Ernst a 4.7 point lead over Rep. Bruce Braley, the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate in Iowa.
Even though House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has acknowledged that Obamacare is the “law of the land,” nine state lawmakers in Wisconsin are hoping to ensure that President Obama’s health reform law won’t ever be implemented in their state. The group of Tea Party-affiliated Republicans is backing a bill that would arrest any federal officials who attempt to implement Obamacare in Wisconsin.
The state officials responded to a survey from the right-wing advocacy group Campaign for Liberty to confirm they would support “legislation to nullify ObamaCare and authorize state and local law enforcement to arrest federal officials attempting to implement the unconstitutional health care scheme known as ObamaCare.”
Another one of the state lawmakers who responded to Campaign for Liberty’s survey, Rep. Don Pridemore (R-Hartford), said he would also support legislation preventing his governor from setting up a health exchange in the state without first getting approval from the state legislature — similar to a ballot initiative that passed last week in Missouri. “That seems reasonable,” Pridemore told the Journal Sentinel. “It was making a statement to the federal government that we don’t want Obamacare.”
Under the health reform law, states that refuse to set up their own health insurance exchanges simply cede their control to the federal government, which will step in and set up an exchange for them.