Obamacare Case Not About Health Care

If what I am reading on Facebook, Tweeter, and blogs is any indication, many Democrat friends are completely misunderstanding State of Florida vs. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – the Supreme Court case that will determine the Constitutionality of Obamacare.

Folks, the case is not about health care.   It is not.  Not even a little bit.  It is not about Obama, it is not about contraception, or taxes, or anything but the Constitution.  Plain and simple, or as the President might say, “let me be perfectly clear,” the court case is about the Constitution.

Okay?  Please people, understanding and accepting this is absolutely critical.

Florida v HHS is about the powers of the federal government.  Are there limits?  If so, what are they?

Nothing in the U. S. Constitution – the governing document of America – refers to health care.  Certainly it expresses no right to health care.  In fact, the Constitution does not say much about individual’s rights at all.  There are two essential reasons for this.

One, as set forth in the Declaration of Independence, we as Americans believe in certainly unalienable rights and that these rights stem from the Creator, that is, that each and every man is born with their full set of rights.  Rights belong to the individual, they are not provided, granted, legislated, in any way bestowed by other men.  Our rights simply exist.

Second, the Constitution enumerates certain express powers to the federal government.  The Constitution is our compact.  Through it we acknowledge the existence of some limitation on the complete autonomy of the individual.  We collectively cede certain abilities to the government for a defined reason, to “secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”  What we have ceded to the government is very clearly spelled out; it amounts to a mere 16 powers, and the subsequent authority to make laws to carry out those powers.

So, if Congress is going to do something, it has to do it under the heading of one of those 16 powers.  Are you still with me?  When Congress adopted Obamacare it asserted that the power to compel participation in the health care market existed under an interpretation of the clause to “regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with Indian tribes.”

As Justice Scalia asked the Solicitor General on Wednesday, does the Congress have power to create commerce for the sole purpose of regulating it?  Does that power exist under the Commerce clause?  That – that right there – is what the court case is about.

The answer is either yes or no.  As Obamacare is attempting to stretch the possible interpretation of the commerce clause to a new length, this is a very important question, and thus landed before the Supreme Court.

Twelve years ago the Supreme Court nullified the Violence Against Women act, a law that basically made it a federal crime to violently assault women.  By striking down this act the court did not rule it okay to assault women, nor does it mean that the Supreme Court hates women and likes violence.  The case, U.S. v. Morrison said that there was no Constitutional justification for the VAW act under the commerce clause.  Period.

In deciding Obamacare the Supreme Court is not deciding if health care is important or anything like that.  The Court always answers one simple question, is {law in question} among the enumerated powers ceded to the federal government by the free citizens of the United States.

Conservatives and liberals should be united in the belief that there are limits on what the government can compel any person to do, if only because we fear what a government in the hands of the opposition would do when they inevitably gain the temporary control of the government.

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One thought on “Obamacare Case Not About Health Care

  1. As if to prove my point, Paul Krugman today rails in the NY Times against the Justices for failing for seem to care about health insurance.

    Mr. Krugman, the case is not about health insurance. I will do you the favor of assuming you are smart enough to realize this. However, that only leaves the possibility that you, dear Krugman, are willfully obfuscating the issue and attempting to distract the public.

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