“The Supreme Court will not be ruling about matters of partisan conviction, or the President’s re-election campaign, or even about health care at all. The lawsuit filed by 26 states and the National Federation of Independent Business is about the outer boundaries of federal power and the architecture of the U.S. political system.”

“The argument here is that health care is an important problem facing this country, and the administration’s preferred remedy for that problem can’t be carried out without the individual mandate. The mandate, therefore, is a ‘necessary and proper’ way to accomplish its larger goals. Again, this would open the door to unlimited government power. If the government has the authority to enact any law it deems necessary to doing whatever it wants to do, the Constitution essentially becomes meaningless.”

“Congress could have achieved this wealth transfer in perfectly constitutional ways. It could simply have imposed new taxes to pay for a national health system. But that would have come with a huge political price tag that neither Congress nor the president was prepared to pay. Instead, Congress adopted the individual mandate, invoking its power to regulate interstate commerce.”

“The presence of externalities and other market imperfections does not justify a departure from the normal rules of the constitutional road. Health care is typically consumed locally, and health-insurance markets themselves primarily operate within the states. The administration’s attempt to fashion a singular, universal solution is not necessary to deal with the variegated issues arising in these markets. States have taken the lead in past reform efforts. They should be an integral part of improving the functioning of health-care and health-insurance markets.”

“The Obama administration’s controversial birth-control mandate saw its first legal challenge Thursday from an employer not affiliated with any religious institution. The latest challenge comes from the owner of a Missouri-based holding company, who says it violates his religious freedom. Although several other suits have been filed, they have all come from religious-affiliated employers such as Catholic universities.”

“Just when you think everything that can be said about Obamacare’s constitutionality has been said, along comes another legal brief that makes a new point. The latest was filed by the Arlington-based Institute for Justice, a nonpartisan, libertarian public-interest law firm. The institute points out that the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate — the requirement to purchase insurance — is not only an unprecedented expansion of federal power. It also undermines several centuries of contract law.”

“The anti-conscience mandate’s violation of employers’ religious freedom is only the beginning of the law’s profound threat to limited government and personal liberty. Obamacare represents an unprecedented federal overreach into the health care decisions of employers, employees, and individuals—religiously affiliated or not—and further implementation of the law will only increase conflicts between government regulations and individual liberty. The lawsuits filed this week reinforce the need to protect religious liberty specifically and personal liberty more generally by repealing Obamacare.”

“The birth-control coverage mandate violates the First Amendment’s bar against the ‘free exercise’ of religion. But it also violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. That statute, passed unanimously by the House of Representatives and by a 97-3 vote in the Senate, was signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1993. It was enacted in response to a 1990 Supreme Court opinion, Employment Division v. Smith.”

“In this article, we briefly explore the range of meanings that attach to the term ‘unconstitutional,’ as well as the problem of determining the ‘constitutionality’ of a lengthy statute when only some portions of the statute are challenged. We then, using ‘unconstitutional’ to mean ‘inconsistent with an original social understanding of the Constitution’s text (with a bit of a nod to judicial precedents),’ show that the individual mandate in the PPACA is not authorized by the federal taxing power, the federal commerce power, or the Necessary and Proper Clause and is therefore unconstitutional.”

“The coming Supreme Court decision about the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate will have profound implications for government control over the doctor-patient relationship.
Simply put, if the federal government can mandate that all Americans must have health insurance, it is only a short step to strict government mandates about how doctors must practice medicine.”