Full Document of Supreme Court Health Care Decision(s) [PDF]

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchHealth & Medicine--The 2009 American Health Care Reform DebateLaw & Legal Issues

Posted June 28, 2012 at 10:42 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. Kendall Harmon wrote:

This seems a key section—

(From Chief Justice Roberts): “Nothing in our opinion precludes Congress from offering funds under the ACA to expand the availability of health care, and requiring that states accepting such funds comply with the conditions on their use. What Congress is not free to do is to penalize States that choose not to participate in that new program by taking away their existing Medicaid funding.” (p. 55)

June 28, 11:52 am | [comment link]
2. Br. Michael wrote:

As I read the opinion it extends far beyond Obamacare.  The Robert’s opinion says that the federal Government can now direct you to engage in commerce (buy a product) or tax you if you do not.  This effectively gives the federal Government an unlimited grant of power to coerce citizens and ends our current system of Government.  It amounts to a repeal of the Constitution.

Why could not the Government require everyone to buy a Volt or pay a $40,000 tax?  The principle is now established by this opinion and all that is left to fight over is the product and the amount of the tax.

June 28, 12:25 pm | [comment link]
3. Cennydd13 wrote:

I don’t think this bodes well for the Obama administration.  As for the constitutionality of this decision, I think it’s open to question.

June 28, 12:46 pm | [comment link]
4. Br. Michael wrote:

3, by definition the decision is constitutional, even if it is totally wrong.

June 28, 1:33 pm | [comment link]
5. Brian from T19 wrote:

It amounts to a repeal of the Constitution.

Oh no!  This is tragic!  The government has mandated purchase of things such as licenses and insurance before and will again.

June 28, 1:39 pm | [comment link]
6. Milton wrote:

As much as I dislike the SCOTUS upholding the constitutionality of the individual mandate, it is good to remember that the legislative branch may yet repeal laws they have passed to find out what was in them, now that more and more of what was in the ACA is coming to light.  Even the ACA is not a law of the Medes and the Persians, which may not be revoked.

June 28, 1:50 pm | [comment link]
7. Br. Michael wrote:

Brian, you are wrong.  See my response below.

June 28, 1:53 pm | [comment link]
8. Milton wrote:

#5 Brian, can you name even one license or form of insurance whose purchase was mandated simply by being an adult US citizen, rather than to engage in some profession or activity?  Nope, didn’t think so.  In hopes (by this registered Independent) of seeing a Republican sweep of the Presidency, Senate and House this fall, here’s to Congressional repeal of ACA.

June 28, 2:01 pm | [comment link]
9. Br. Michael wrote:

8, that’s good, but the repeal of Obamacare will not undo the damage Robert’s did to the Constitution.  Absent a Constitutional amendment the federal government will retain the unprecedented power that Robert’s gave it—the police power.  And the federal government has never given up power.

June 28, 2:19 pm | [comment link]
10. Milton wrote:

#9 Certainly true.  That’s one of the reasons why the POTUS is important.  Too many conservatives either sitting out in 2008 or wilfully believing Obama’s campaign lies and the blanket pass given him by the liberal media has resulted in 2 new very liberal SCOTUS justices.  Hence a 5-4 voting away of limited government, balance of powers, state’s rights and individual freedoms, instead of a 7-2 vote the other way.  But given a firm shift back to a conservative Presidency, Senate and House for long enough to shift the SCOTUS back to conservatism, after the full misery of Obamacare is known, and we may end up not only repealing the ACA but regaining some measure of Constitutional sanity.  Of course, Jesus may return first!  In the meantime the US will suffer collectively for its collective ignorance and apathy, not to mention turning away from the divine inspiration of the founders.

June 28, 2:30 pm | [comment link]
11. Kendall Harmon wrote:

Another key line of the day

Chief Justice Roberts wrote that the decision offers no endorsement of the law’s wisdom, and that letting it survive reflects “a general reticence to invalidate the acts of the nation’s elected leaders.”

“It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices,” he wrote.


June 28, 3:07 pm | [comment link]
12. Jim the Puritan wrote:

#2—I also am worried that the Court has now given the federal government a power even more draconian than the Commerce Clause.

June 28, 3:52 pm | [comment link]
13. Bookworm(God keep Snarkster) wrote:

“It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices,” he wrote.

He’s got that right, at the very least.  And everyone will see how they like millions of illegals on the dole and personal/state/federal bankruptcy.

June 28, 4:08 pm | [comment link]
14. Ad Orientem wrote:

I think both sides are missing something very important in this decision. It is true that the Supreme Court upheld most of the law, but they did so on a rather narrow technicality that would rarely be applicable, namely the tax power. Five of the justices expressly ruled that the law was NOT constitutional under the commerce clause and that attempts to so justify it were an overreach of Federal power. This ruling is going to have a lot of consequences in constitutional law down the road and most people haven’t grasped that the SCOTUS just put a giant check on Federal power.

In short while conservatives are right to see this as a tactical defeat, I view it as a strategic victory. The tax power is a rather narrow one and only applicable here because of the penalty for not having insurance. In other words this law survived on a technicality and the Court has made it clear they take a more narrow view of the commerce clause than the Administration and its liberal allies in Congress. That is bad news for the political left.

June 28, 4:43 pm | [comment link]
15. Br. Michael wrote:

14, I disagree.  Roberts’s gave the Congress a roadmap to pass legislation that they can’t pass under the Commerce Clause.

Need to force people into fuel efficient cars?  Buy a Smart for 2 car or pay a 3,000 dollar tax.  See it’s simple, true you have to pass it through Congress, but the power of Congress to pass such legislation is no longer in doubt.  You can argue that Congress wouldn’t pass such legislation, but prior to this decision you could ague that Congress couldn’t pass such legislation.  There is a world of difference between can’t and won’t.

June 29, 9:56 am | [comment link]
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