“The constitutional battle over ObamaCare has largely focused on the constitutionality of the individual mandate. Namely, does forcing individuals to buy health insurance violate the commerce clause? But as the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals prepares to hear Florida v. United States, a second issue is of equal importance: Was District Court Judge Roger Vinson correct to rule that the federal government can force states to expand their Medicaid programs as a precondition for continuing to receive matching federal funds for the program?”
“The feds argue that folks without insurance affect commerce when they consume care without paying for it. Providers then pass along the cost of that uncompensated care to those with insurance.
But requiring everyone to buy insurance will not solve this problem. In fact, the individual mandate will result in higher uncompensated care costs.
The cure, so to speak, is worse than the disease.”
“Despite the fact that the three-judge appeals court panel was comprised entirely of Democratic appointees, he said there was a positive surprise for opponents of the law.”
“Today, the Fourth Circuit became the first appellate court in the nation to enter the Obamacare fray. It heard two very similar cases back-to-back, Liberty University’s, in which the government won in the district court, and the Commonwealth of Virginia’s, in which Judge Henry Hudson struck down the individual mandate back in December.”
“First, the penalty for not buying health insurance is not a tax. Even if the penalty were a tax, it would fail the constitutional requirements for income, excise, or direct taxes. Second, the power to regulate interstate commerce extends only to economic activities; it does not permit Congress to compel such activities in order to regulate them. Third, the mandate is not necessary; indeed, it is merely a means to circumvent problems that would not exist if not for PPACA itself.”
“It’s rare for the Supreme Court to expedite cases because justices generally prefer to have the benefit of looking at the decisions of the appeals’ courts as well as letting the arguments mature as they move up the judicial ladder. But in this case, the uncertainty regarding the constitutionality of the health care law is causing problems for governors who have to decide whether to start implementing aspects of the law. If they proceed with implementation and it’s ruled unconstitutional, all that money will be wasted.”
“Missouri’s Democratic attorney general broke with his party on Monday and urged a federal judge to invalidate the central provision of the new health care law.”
“Recent district court decisions have fueled speculation over what the Supreme Court will do about ObamaCare if and when one of the challenges to the law’s ‘individual mandate’ arrives on the justices’ doorstep. Largely unnoticed amidst the agitation, though, cases that will have profound effects on ObamaCare’s future are already pending before the Court. They involve enormous amounts of money, and they have powerful implications for the implementation of the criminally misnamed ‘Affordable Care Act.’ The justices will get these cases right, to good effect.”
“The fundamental question in the Obamacare case is whether there is any constraint on the ability of Congress to regulate economic activity. Do we still live in a system of dual sovereignty, split between the federal government and the states, as set out by the Constitution? Does the federal government only have certain enumerated powers? Is anything beyond its ambit? Judge Kessler’s argument is a ringing “no” on all three counts.”
“The Obama administration got a well-deserved rebuke today from Judge Roger Vinson in the Florida lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare (aka the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act as big government types insist). Judge Vinson issued a new order in response to a bizarre and obtuse ‘motion to clarify’ that the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed on February 17.”