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Va. passes 1st bill banning health care mandate

Virginia's General Assembly is the first in the nation to approve legislation that bucks federal health care reforms by banning mandatory health insurance coverage.
/ Source: The Associated Press

Virginia's General Assembly is the first in the nation to approve legislation that bucks federal health care reforms by banning mandatory health insurance coverage.

Without debate, the House of Delegates voted 80-17 Wednesday to accept Senate amendments to a bill that supporters say preserves Virginia's prerogatives as a state.

Thirty-four other legislatures have filed or proposed similar measures rejecting health insurance mandates.

But Virginia's legislature, scheduled to adjourn Saturday, is the first to finish work on a bill. The measure goes to Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell, who plans to sign it.

The measures are advancing nationally as Republicans capitalize on voter discontent over Democratic-backed federal health care reform efforts in Congress.