SC AG: Health care reform bill unconstitutional

South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster

South Carolina's top prosecutor says the massive health care reform legislation just signed into law is unconstitutional.

Attorney General Henry McMaster said Tuesday he and attorneys general from 12 other states have filed a federal lawsuit over the law against the U.S. departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and Treasury.

McMaster says the law is unconstitutional because it requires all Americans to buy health insurance. Last week, McMaster called that provision an unfair tax on citizens.

The lawsuit was filed in federal court in Pensacola, Fla., on Tuesday. McMaster has been working on the suit with Florida's attorney general, Bill McCollum.

Both men are running for governor in their respective states.

McMaster said in a news release, "The key question involved is whether personal freedom, state sovereignty, and constitutional law will survive in America for future generations. A legal challenge by the States appears to be the only hope of protecting the American people from this unprecedented attack on our system of government."

View the multi-state lawsuit:

The Associated Press says the lawsuit was filed seven minutes after President Barack Obama signed the overhaul bill Tuesday. It names the U.S. departments of Health and Human Services, Treasury and Labor.

Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum is taking the lead in the lawsuit. In addition to SC's Attorney General, AGs form Nebraska, Texas, Michigan, Utah, Pennsylvania, Alabama, South Dakota, Louisiana,

Idaho, Washington and Colorado are joining in. Other attorneys general may join the lawsuit later or sue separately. The lawsuit was filed in federal court in Pensacola.

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