A federal judge in Pensacola, Florida has struck down U.S. President Barack Obama’s socialized medicine law in its entirety on the grounds “that Congress exceeded the bounds of its authority in passing the act with the individual mandate.”
“Because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void,” U.S. District Court Judge Roger Vinson wrote in his 78-page opinion. “This has been a difficult decision to reach, and I am aware that it will have indeterminable implications.”
Difficult? How is it “difficult” to conclude that the government has no right to dictate purchases to its citizens?
Last month, U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson also found the individual mandate unconstitutional. Two other lower courts have ruled that Congress had the right to impose the mandate as part of the $1 trillion (some say $2.5 trillion) plan.
“An individual’s personal decision to purchase — or decline purchase — (of) health insurance from a private provider is beyond the historical reach of the U.S. Constitution,” Hudson ruled in December. “No specifically constitutional authority exists to mandate the purchase of health insurance.”
Unlike Vinson’s ruling, Hudson’s decision left other parts of Obamacare in place – but it’s clear that all of these cases are heading to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Earlier this month, Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives repealed Obamacare – the opening salvo in a protracted war against this costly, job-killing big government abomination.
In a letter to lawmakers prior to the vote, a group of 200 economists described Obamacare as “a threat to U.S. businesses,” one that “will place a crushing debt burden on future generations of Americans.” Meanwhile, a new report issued by The Cato Institute found that Obamacare will result in massive new Medicaid expenses for cash-strapped states.
Last March, “Obamacare” passed the U.S. House by a narrow 219-212 vote – with 178 Republicans and 34 Democrats voting against the bill.
After Obama signed the bill into law, Democrats vowed to undertake a massive educational and public relations campaign aimed at selling the American public on the benefits of the legislation. That didn’t happen … and health care data that’s been released over the past year hasn’t helped their cause (click here, here, here and here for a few examples of that).
In striking down the new law, Vinson ruled that its mandate violated the Commerce Clause of the Constitution.
“Regardless of how laudable its attempts may have been to accomplish these goals in passing the act, Congress must operate within the bounds established by the Constitution,” Vinson wrote. “Again, this case is not about whether the act is wise or unwise legislation. It is about the constitutional role of the federal government.”
True that …
We have consistently opposed Obama’s socialized medicine law. We hate its infringements on individual liberty, but the bottom line is that America can’t afford its exorbitant costs or the new burdens it would place on the private sector.