Parnell asks AG for federal health care advice

February 3, 2011 

JUNEAU -- Gov. Sean Parnell said Thursday he has asked his attorney general to advise him on whether implementing and enforcing the federal health care overhaul would put Parnell in violation of his oath of office.

A federal judge in Florida this week struck down the law as unconstitutional in a case joined by 26 states, including Alaska. A major point of contention is a provision requiring citizens to buy health insurance. Two other federal judges have upheld the law.

While the Republican governor concedes the issue is expected to be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court, he said he has a duty to uphold the law and wants Attorney General John J. Burns to advise on what that duty is after the Florida ruling.

"I'm caught between a federal government that says, 'You must pursue this, you must pursue this,' and I have the duty to uphold the rule of law," he said.

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