Gary Fineout reports via Twitter that a judge has blocked Amendment 9 from appearing on Florida’s November ballots:

Judge has thrown Amendment 9 – the health care freedom amendment – off the ballot.

The Miami Herald’s Mary Ellen Klas is backing up the news, also via Twitter:

Batting zero; 9 amendments on Florida ballot, three put on by legislature have now been removed — homestead, anti-Obamacare and redistrict.

Amendment 9, which was approved to be added to the ballot by the legislature during its 2010 regular session, would

prohibit laws or rules from compelling any person, employer, or health care provider to participate in any health care system; permit a person or employer to purchase lawful health care services directly from a health care provider; permit a health care provider to accept direct payment from a person or employer for lawful health care services; exempt persons, employers, and health care providers from penalties and fines for paying or accepting direct payment for lawful health care services; and permit the purchase or sale of health insurance in private health care systems.

Read in full or download House Joint Resolution 37, which put Amendment 9 on the ballot, here:

House Joint Resolution 37


Brad Ashwell, an advocate for Florida PIRG (Public Interest Research Group) and a foe of Amendment 9, has reacted to news of the amendment’s dismissal with the following press release:

We are extremely pleased with Judge Shelfer’s decision to strike this politically motivated and confusing amendment from the ballot. The courts appear to be doing an excellent job of protecting the interest of voters this election season.

Florida PIRG repeatedly testified against Amendment #9 in the legislature because it is a blatant attempt by state lawmakers to prevent implementation of the new national health care reform legislation.

“The Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act” has numerous requirements to reform practices of private health insurance companies such as requiring insurers to cover those with pre-existing conditions or to no longer drop people when they get sick. It also contains provisions to lower health care costs, improve the quality of health care services, and improve the Medicare program.

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