Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) called the U.S. Supreme Court decision on the federal healthcare overhaul “a bad ruling for the American people.”

Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell (R) is bathed in red, white and blue stage lighting as he addresses the Conservative Political Action Conference. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP)

“This is a dark day for the American people, the Constitution, and the rule of law,” Cuccinelli said.  “This is a dark day for American liberty.”

While Republican leaders in Richmond universally decried the ruling, their next step was less clear.

McDonnell said he would meet with his staff to determine how or even if Virginia would move forward to create a health insurance exchange. McDonnell said that a state-based marketplace for insurance policies is a bad idea, but that a federally created one would be worse.

Yet he also expressed hope that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who vowed to have the law repealed, would win in November.

“It says something more about why we need a new president, who will lead, why we need a new United States Senate, and then to do what we can to repeal and replace this policy,” McDonnell said.