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Virginia AG Says Health Care Lawsuit "About Liberty"


On Monday, a federal judge ruled that Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has legal authority to sue the federal government over the sweeping health care reform law. The Justice Department had earlier urged the judge to dismiss the lawsuit.

Cuccinelli said on's "Washington Unpugged" today that "We are out beyond the known limits of the Constitution with this legislation."

The health care bill, he said, "is more far reaching than anything under the commerce clause, and anything under the taxing power."

"This case is more about liberty than it is about health care," Cuccinelli argued.

Health care wasn't the only reason Cucinnelli has made headlines yesterday: The Virginia attorney general also released a legal opinion finding that state police have the authority to question people about immigration status if they have been stopped for any reason.

He said on "Washington Unplugged" that there are "critically important" differences between immigration law in his state and the one in Arizona, however.

In an interview with CBS News Chief Justice Correspondent Jan Crawford and New York Times Chief Political Correspondent Jeff Zeleny, Cuccinelli said the difference is that Virginia does not require - but only allows - law enforcement to inquire about immigration status.

On both issues, Cuccinelli called the White House "incredibly aggressive" and said the administration's actions "over-exercised power of federal government." He argued that there could be implications for that stance in the midterm elections because "voters respond to that."

CBS News Capitol Hill producer Jill Jackson and CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller were also featured on Tuesday's "Washington Unplugged." Check it out above.

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