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Hundreds rally in opposition to federal health care overhaul

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(St. Louis Public Radio photo/Marshall Griffin)
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Hundreds rally in opposition to proposed federal health care legislation at the Missouri Capitol on Wednesday

By Rachel Lippmann and Marshall Griffin, St. Louis Public Radio

Jefferson City, Mo – About 400 people gathered inside the Missouri Capitol Wednesday to oppose federal health care legislation.

About three dozen Republican lawmakers were among the participants in the rally in support of a state constitutional amendment allowing Missouri residents to opt out of the overhaul.

The amendment is sponsored by St. Louis County Republican Jane Cunningham. It would prohibit individuals and small businesses from being penalized if they don't purchase health insurance

"It will also protect your right to use your own money to buy your own medical services," Cunningham said. "It's hard in America to get your hands around and to comprehend that we actually have to protect that right for you."

Governor Jay Nixon says with the state facing extensive budget cuts this year and next, rejecting any federal money is a bad idea.

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