SCOTUS Obamacare Dissent Opinion Highlights

Posted: June 28, 2012 by JBH in Uncategorized

Directly from SCOTUS:

Excerpts from the Introduction of the Dissent:

What is absolutely clear, affirmed by the text of the 1789 Constitution, by the Tenth Amendment ratified in 1791, and by innumerable cases of ours in the 220 years since, is that there are structural limits upon federal power—upon what it can prescribe with respect to private conduct, and upon what it can impose upon the sovereign States. Whatever may be the conceptual limits upon the Commerce Clause and upon the power to tax and spend, they cannot be such as will enable the Federal Government to regulate all private conduct and to compel the States to function as administrators of federal programs….”

As for the constitutional power to tax and spend for the general welfare: The Court has long since expanded that beyond (what Madison thought it meant) taxing and spending for those aspects of the general welfare that were within the Federal Government’s enumerated powers…. Thus, we now have sizable federal Departments devoted to subjects not mentioned (my emphasis) among Congress’ enumerated powers, and only marginally related to commerce: the Department of Education, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Housing and Urban Development….”

The Act before us here exceeds federal power both in mandating the purchase of health insurance and in denying non-consenting States all Medicaid funding. These parts of the Act are central to its design and operation, and all the Act’s other provisions would not have been enacted without them. In our view it must follow that the entire statute is inoperative….”

On the Individual Mandate:

If this provision “regulates” anything, it is the failure (their emphasis) to maintain minimum essential coverage. One might argue that it regulates that failure by requiring it to be accompanied by payment of a penalty. But that failure—that abstention from commerce—is not “Commerce.”

The Government presents the Individual Mandate as a unique feature of a complicated regulatory scheme governing many parties with countervailing incentives that must be carefully balanced. Congress has imposed an extensive set of regulations on the health insurance industry, and compliance with those regulations will likely cost the industry a great deal. If the industry does not respond by increasing premiums, it is not likely to survive. And if the industry does increase premiums, then there is a serious risk that its products—insurance plans—will becomeeconomically undesirable for many and prohibitively expensive for the rest.

So they seem to say that insurance cost will sky-rocket, but if I remember correctly, our President said that wouldn’t be the case and we all no he NEVER tells a lie.

Congress has impressed into service third parties, healthy individuals who could be but are not customers of the relevant industry, to offset the undesirable consequences of the regulation. Congress’ desire to force these individuals to purchase insurance is motivated by the fact that they are further removed from the market than unhealthy individuals with pre-existing conditions, because they are less likely to need extensive care in the near future. If Congress can reach out and command even those furthest removed from an interstate market to participate in the market, then the Commerce Clause becomes a font of unlimited power….

Unlimited power. This is what it’s about folks, total government control over people lives. As conservatives we need to get more involved in the political process by getting in touch with candidates running for office and current incumbents and let them know that we will not tolerate any more attacks on individual liberty. It is time to start finding statesmen who believe in the Constitution and the rule of law.

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