Chris Koster is not a fan of requiring health insurance


Chris Koster: Democrat against mandatory health insurance.
  • Chris Koster: Democrat against mandatory health insurance.

Just guessing here, but I kinda doubt President Obama will be helping with Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster's re-election campaign (not that it'll matter in blood-red Missouri). Yesterday, Koster had a Republican flashback and urged a federal judge to strike down the mandatory health insurance provision in the law.

Koster filed a "friend of the court" brief to the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, which is handling the challenges to the law. Koster isn't a fan of the law's requirement that most Americans get health insurance.

In his letter to Republican leaders of the Legislature, Koster wrote that while "the resolutions passed by the General Assembly are non-binding ... they are impactful, as they give voice to the political will of


Koster was referencing the passing of "Proposition C," a ballot referendum passed to nullify the law, and resolutions passed by the Legislature calling on Koster to "[challenge] the constitutionality and validity of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care

Act ... and to aggressively defend the validity of Proposition C."

Koster added that while he favors "the expansion of health coverage," as attorney general his "highest duty is to the Constitution and to the law, and not to a political outcome."

Koster argues in the brief that Congress "reached beyond" its bounds by requiring people to buy health insurance -- a move Koster referred to as "a substantial blow to federalism and personal freedom."

Koster asked the judge to remove the mandate from the law.

The New York Times wrote that Koster's opposition to the issue "reflects the political challenges for Missouri Democrats in the coming election cycle."

Though this state has long been viewed as a political bellwether, the politics of the electorate have grown more conservative in recent years, and Barack Obama narrowly lost the state in 2008.

Mr. Koster, who is up for re-election next year along with the state's two top Democrats, Gov. Jay Nixon and Senator Claire McCaskill, has already faced questions about his political loyalties.

Known as a Republican moderate, he became a Democrat just months before announcing his candidacy for attorney general, succeeding despite criticism of the move from both parties, including being pinned with the nickname Koster the Imposter.

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