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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Attorneys general from 13 states sued the federal government Tuesday, claiming the landmark health care overhaul is unconstitutional just seven minutes after President Barack Obama signed it into law.
The lawsuit was filed in Pensacola after the Democratic president signed the 10-year, $938 billion bill the House passed Sunday night.
"The Constitution nowhere authorizes the United States to mandate, either directly or under threat of penalty, that all citizens and legal residents have qualifying health care coverage," the lawsuit says.
Legal experts say it has little chance of succeeding because, under the Constitution, federal laws trump state laws.
Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum is taking the lead and is joined by attorneys general from South Carolina, Nebraska, Texas, Michigan, Utah, Pennsylvania, Alabama, South Dakota, Idaho, Washington, Colorado and Louisiana. All are Republicans except James "Buddy" Caldwell of Louisiana, a Democrat.