Marco Rubio Proposes Doomed Amendment To Repeal Obamacare

Marco Rubio is engaging in the long  known practice of politicians who are trying to appeal to their party’s base by engaging in meaningless actions:

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) on Tuesday introduced a constitutional amendment aimed at invalidating the individual mandate to buy health insurance under Obamacare.

The text of the “Right To Refuse” amendment, according to Rubio’s office: “Congress shall make no law that imposes a tax on a failure to purchase goods or services.”

“ObamaCare is a disastrous policy that is not only destructive to job creation, it will also unleash the corrupt and scandal-ridden IRS on taxpayers simply for not buying health insurance,” Rubio said in a statement.

He invoked the Internal Revenue Scandal two more times in his press release, timed as Congress was set to hold another hearing into its improper targeting of conservative groups.

“We should put our faith in the American people to decide what goods and services they want to buy, not have Congress dictate it and have the IRS empowered to harass Americans to make sure they do it,” he said. “Let’s do everything we can to keep the IRS out of our health care and stop future congresses from forcing private citizens to spend their hard-earned money on products or services Washington is forcing on them.”

Rep. Steven Palazzo (R-MS) has introduced companion legislation in the House.

There is, of course, no chance whatsoever that this Amendment would get the required 2/3 vote in the House and Senate necessary to the state, not to mention that it’s even less likely to get the support of 3/4 of the states if it somehow managed to pass that hurdle. However, this has nothing to do with proposing something that has any realistic chance of being successfully enacted. Instead, it’s a reflection of the fact that Rubio has been taking significant hits from the right over his support for the Senate’s immigration bill. This, quite obviously, is an effort on his part to rekindle his relationship with the right wing of his party in anticipation of a potential 2016 Presidential run. Of course, it would be nice if members of the party that claims to respect the Constitution didn’t feel free to cynically exploit it for political purposes in this manner.

FILED UNDER: 2016 Election, Congress, Healthcare Policy, US Politics, , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Caj says:

    Oh for Gods sake! Can the Republican Party get anymore stupid than they already are? Talk about flogging a dead horse. They keep flogging the said horse and will just not accept that it is dead. Those people are absolutely off their rockers!!! Marco Rubio is scared of the tea party crazies…oops, he is one of them! He must keep them happy at all costs, so he will engage in all the nonsense they like to talk about. The Republican Party has become a laughing stock. They should be totally embarrassed, but of course they won’t be as they have no shame or sense of decency!

  2. Kauf Buch says:

    Rubbish. It’s a silly fig leaf meant to be a pleasant distraction from his treasonous support of the Schumer Amnesty Bill. Whatever the Dems have on Rubio to blackmail him into joining “el Gang de Ocho” must be nasty…notwithstanding his earlier leanings in said direction while in the Florida State.

  3. Sam Malone says:

    In which Rubio proves he is just as stupid as the rest of the Republican caucus…which is difficult to do. What a collection of fools.

  4. Davebo says:

    This, quite obviously, is an effort on his part to rekindle his relationship with the right wing mainstream of his party in anticipation of a potential 2016 Presidential run.

    Fixed that for ya!!

  5. Davebo says:

    @Kauf Buch:

    Absolutely. Obviously only Cubans should get instant green cards with no questions asked.

    Sadly for the GOP, older Cuban Americans are dying off like the rest of the GOP mainstay demographic and younger ones wonder why the hell we still have an embargo with Cuba after over 50 years.

    But don’t worry. For now at least you’ll still have those older whites insisting the federal government keep their hands of their socialized medicine.

    (When you’ve lost the AARP well…. you’ve lost)

  6. MarkedMan says:

    This is what it means to vote for a Republican at the Federal level. It doesn’t matter if your personal rep or senator is a wonderful person with good priorities – this is what the Republican party will spend their time on. They literally will not spend any serious effort to, say, provide government.

  7. Gustopher says:

    In one fell swoop, Rubio has beaten the Republican House who merely introduced laws to repeal ObamaCare. A constitutional amendment is much more impressive.

    I look forward to Rand Paul upping the ante, if he can. New law of Thermodynamics repealing ObamaCare?

  8. Caj says:

    Bye bye Marco! Seeing as your fake interest in immigration reform may be going down the pan you’ll have to resort back to the tea party nonsense. Hence young sir, you will never set foot inside the White House either.