The real question that will be answered by the Supreme Court in the ObamaCare case that begins today concerns the Commerce Clause and whether or not the Federal Government has any limits placed on it by the Constitution.
We all know that the intent of the framers of the Constitution was to place the powers of the individual and the state above that of the Federal Government. The founders simply did not trust a large centralized Federal Government to remain in the small role they created for it. So they enumerated the powers and reserved any other powers to the state and the individual.
That should have been pretty clear.
But they saw fit to include what is called the “Commerce Clause” which is actually Article 1, Section 8, Clause 3 of the US Constitution.
Congress shall have the power:
To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;
It is clear to the minds of most that the intention here was not to give the Federal Government complete and unabridged power and control over everything we buy, or don’t buy. That was simply not the intent of the founders who were very careful to do everything they could to keep the Federal Government from becoming what is has now become.
But anyone who reads that clause and somehow believe that it gives the Federal Government the power to force Americans to buy a good or product that the Feds deem mandatory must also believe that it gives the Federal Government the power to force foreign Nations to purchase American goods, or potentially face a war and sanctions for non-compliance.
That may seem a bit of a reach, but so did the thoughts of our government forcing us to buy a product from a private company right up until it happened.
It is simply not credible to argue that this sentence allows the Federal Government to force only one of the three groups – foreign Nations, the Several States and Indian Tribes – to buy insurance. The law allows American Indians to opt out of ObamaCare as individuals but does not address entire tribes.
But nowhere in the bill does it exempt Foreign Countries. So will citizens of Foreign Nations face the penalties if they fail to purchase a government approved plan?
Obviously the United States Federal Government is not granted the power to use force on citizens of Foreign Nations to buy Health Insurance. Nor does the Commerce Clause allow the same for Americans.
And by definition, Health Care is entirely within each state, not trade among the several states. And the penalty imposed, which was specifically argued during the passage of the bill to not be a tax, is not a power given to Congress. They have the power to tax, but the “fines” were specifically and intentionally not called a tax.
That is until they were challenged in court, and the penalty suddenly became a tax in Court arguments.
And one of the most disturbing aspects with this law, and there are many, is the way it was passed into law.
When Congress passes a bill, both the House and the Senate must approve the legislation. There are several ways this gets done, but in the case of ObamaCare, the process was interrupted by the election of Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown who specifically campaigned on casting the needed vote to keep the bill from passing. Actually, Brown’s vote would have been the 41st to keep the “filibuster” alive and prevent the vote from reaching the floor for a final vote where only 51 votes would have been required.
But the Senate had already passed their version before Scott Brown was elected. And anyone familiar with the way the sausage gets made in Washington D.C. knows that the bills that come out of each body are usually really bad, loaded with things nobody expected or intended to be in the final bill. But all of this “garbage” will get “fixed” in the meetings that hammer out the differences, and then the final, combined bill gets voted on again by both Houses.
But the election of Brown threw a monkey wrench into the process. The Senate Bill had passed the Senate, and the House had their own bill, which also had a lot of problems that normally get worked out in the process of combining the bills into one identical bill.
The problem was, Scott Brown was going to keep the bill from passing when it came up in the Senate. There was no doubt about it. No matter what was worked out to “fix” the bill in Conference Committee, it was dead in the Senate.
So the only way that remained to get something passed was for the House scrap their own bill and to accept the Senate Bill without a single change. For if there were any change at all, it would have to go back through the Senate for final approval.
So that is what the Democrats did. They passed the Senate Bill which was loaded with things that were supposed to be changed or “fixed” in the normal process as is. A number of the items in the Senate bill were put in there to give some Democrats cover for a “yes” vote knowing that the resulting bill would leave out their “incentive” yet giving them the ability to vote for the bill and appease voters at home.
So what eventually became law was the Senate Bill, loaded with crap by Harry Reid and his minions that was never intended to be the final bill.
What passed was like a half baked pie. The full process was skipped in order to pass something before the Democrats lost the House, and with it, the last opportunity to pass a Health Care bill. The “perfect storm” of Democratic control of the House, Senate and White House may never happen again, and the Democrats believed that passing bad legislation was better than no legislation.
And it is laughable to see the Democrats crowing like cocks in a barnyard at the half-baked “achievement” of a poorly conceived law pushed through a bastardized process under cover of darkness.
The Law is so loaded with problems, and cost, that it is untenable.
And for the Democrats pretending that this law is a monumental achievement, I have news for them.
The majority of Americans see this as a joke. This is the Democrats saying “I meant to do that!”