The 11th Circuit shoots down the ObamaCare mandate.
The provision in President Obama’s health care law requiring Americans to buy health insurance or face tax penalties was ruled unconstitutional on Friday by the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, in Atlanta.
It was the first appellate review to find the provision unconstitutional — a previous federal appeals court upheld the law — and some lawyers said that the decision made it more likely that the fate of the health care law would ultimately be decided by the Supreme Court.
The court found that Congress exceeded its powers to regulate commerce when it decided to require people to buy health insurance, a provision of the health care law known as the “individual mandate.” But the court held that while that provision was unconstitutional, the rest of the wide-ranging law could stand.
A 2-to-1 majority ruled that the mandate was beyond Congress’s power under the Commerce Clause of the Constitution, writing that “what Congress cannot do under the Commerce Clause is mandate that individuals enter into contracts with private insurance companies for the purchase of an expensive product from the time they are born until the time they die.”
If the federal government can force you to purchase a good or a service, in this case, health care insurance, what cannot they force you to do? Don't know about you all but that doesn't sound like freedom to us.
The 11th circuit case was closely watched because among the plaintiffs were the Attorneys General of 26 states but it was just the second of three appelate reviews as the 6th Circuit found the mandate to be constitutional. The 4th Circuit is expected to render their ruling shortly.
There's also this from one of the lawyers arguing against the ObamaCare mandate.
Michael Carvin says that a Democratic judge's ruling against Obamacare proves this isn't a partisan battle.Michael Carvin, one of the lawyers who argued against President Obama’s national health care law before the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, said the court’s decision to strike down the law’s individual mandate shows that the constitutional questions being raised transcend politics.
“It refutes the notion that this is a partisan policy fight where only the Republican appointed judges agree with our constitutional analysis,” Carvin said in a telephone interview. “This shows that it is a serious Commerce Clause issue where Congress has exceeded its power in an unprecedented way.”
President Clinton appointed one of the judges who co-authored the majority opinion in today’s two to one court decision. The suit was brought by 26 states led by Florida, as well as the National Federation of Independent Business. Carvin represented the NFIB.
“There’s simply no reason, if (Congress) can compel you to purchase this product (health insurance), that they can’t compel you to purchase any product,” he said.
The mandate is important as it's the mandate that holds the entire law together. Those 32 million previously uninsured are mostly younger people who are not using healthcare as much as other segments of society but who are needed to prop up all the other rules and regulations Congress saw fit to saddle the health insurance companies.
So, it wasn't necessarily Congress acting in benevolence in insuring those 32 million people but the health insurance companies insisting that the mandate be included in order to finance the law. Recall the interview of Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell by Bill O'Reilly last year right after ObamaCare was signed into law.
Right at the end of the clip, Rendell lets the cat out of the bag.
"It's the insurance companies that drove the mandate"
Well, if the insurance companies were going to become wards of the state, the mandate was the least Congress could grant them.
So, it looks like we're off to the Supreme Court and an appointment with the "Swing Man", Anthony Kennedy.