May 26, 2016

The Obamacare saga encourages political dishonesty [Contributor]

Political dissemblance over the nature of taxes and regulatory architecture looms as an inevitably dark truth of post-Obamacare government. Through the tortuous legislative course of Obamacare’s genesis, Democrats continually denied that the individual mandate was a tax, the heaviest word in America’s political lexicon. Instead, the mandate was a “penalty,” or a “shared responsibility payment.” (A chillingly Orwellian turn-of-phrase). The Democrats knew that truth in taxation would slay Obamacare and scuttle their century-long obsession with state-directed flu shots and hip replacements. So they prevaricated. What do congressmen call a law that amends the Internal Revenue Code, is enforced by the Internal Revenue Service, and forces families to pay up to 2.5% of their incomes into the federal treasury? Anything but a tax.

Unless you’re in court—there, any word will do. [cont…]

The “individual mandate” is a “tax.” Voters are not noticeably relieved.

The government devoted 21 lines of its brief to argue that § 5000A was a tax, and it’s longest statement on the issue at oral arguments was 50 words.

Huffington Predicts the Demise of Obamacare

[h/t Aaron Bludworth]                  

Obamacare Proponents Brace for Supreme Court Smackdown

In the days leading up to the Supreme Court oral arguments on the constitutionality of President’s Obama’s signature health care law, there was no end to the media speculation about which conservative leaning justice(s) would leave the dark-side and vote to uphold Obamacare. We were treated to a barrage of statistics touting the popularity of Obamacare, reminders that Republicans had supported mandates in the past and other specious arguments that have no bearing on the constitutionality of the law. Self-assured Progressives, it seemed, had little concern that socialized medicine was in any danger. [cont…]

The Constitutionality of the Individual Mandate: The Very One-Sided Fordham Debate. [video]

There are few things in politics or the law quite so enjoyable as watching one use words to bludgeon and destroy a weak or faulty idea.

Recently (as in, on Monday of this week) the University of Utah’s SJ Quinney College of Law hosted the Fordham Debate. The topic for the two Ivy League educated scholars who would take up opposing sides?

Be it resolved that the individual mandate provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is constitutional under the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution.

Yeah. Pretty much the lodestone for the entire political right’s anger at the elected left and why Obama, for all his panache, brilliance, and Vulcan-like demeanor, has lost the blessing of nearly a majority of Americans. [cont…]

“Unconstitutional,” says the 11th Circuit.

“Unconstitutional” The news making its way through the legal blogosphere, and the online news outlets, is that the 11th Circuit has ruled the individual mandate part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (the “Act”) is unconstitutional. Let me underscore that: only the individual mandate was found unconstitutional. The rest of the law has […]

The Commerce Clause argument in Virginia v. Sebelius, among others

Yesterday, the headlines shouted that individual mandate of the Affordable Health Care for America Act (let’s just call it “the Act” for short) was found unconstitutional by a federal court in Virginia. (see my short post on it here) Partisan critics of the ruling were quick to point out that there have already been two cases […]