Mar 23, 2010 Political
Looks like some of the states of these United States have decided to sue the federal government over the recently passed health care takeover bill. Virginia, Florida and at least seven other states are preparing lawsuits challenging the Constitutionality of the insurance mandate the bill contains.
By the year 2014 the federal government will require all people here to buy health insurance. It will be the first time in history that an American has to purchase something to be a citizen in good standing.
The lawsuit from Virginia will contend that forcing people to buy health insurance is unconstitutional and is not regulated by the oft abused Commerce Clause. Virginia Attorney General Kenneth Cuccinelli put it very simply:
“If a person decides not to buy health insurance, that person by definition is not engaging in commerce,” Cuccinelli said in recorded comments. “If you are not engaging in commerce, how can the federal government regulate you?” al-Reuters
He is, of course, correct but whether the courts will see it that way is another thing all together. It is possible that the courts will say the government can require us to buy insurance to have good standing in this country even though this runs contrary to the freedoms our Founders fought so hard to obtain and preserve. Then again, freedom is always only one generation away from extinction and this generation, the Obama generation, is hell bent on taking freedom away.
The other issue is that Virginia passed a law that states its citizens cannot be compelled to buy health insurance. This directly contradicts the federal mandate and will lead to a Tenth Amendment battle. While federal law usually trumps state law the federal government’s law must be Constitutional.
Also, the Constitution specifically states [paraphrase] that the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution nor prohibited to it by the states are reserved to the states or to the people. The Constitution does not give the government power to force people to buy something. It regulates commerce but commerce involves voluntary buying something. As was stated, if you choose not to buy something then there is no commerce.
This is a key part of the legislation because the expected revenue from the mandate is designed to offset covering those with preexisting conditions.
The issue will be interesting because the federal government will claim it has the right to control the states insurance because insurance is commerce but the federal government regulates interstate commerce and insurance companies are prohibited from selling across state lines.
This will likely be an interesting legal challenge that will have an impact for a long time to come. If the court decides the federal government can force you to buy something what will they force us to buy next? Maybe they will say we have to buy GE solar panels before we can own a home. Maybe they will say we have to buy a GM if we want a car.
I can’t imagine the courts will allow this to stand but then again, the SCOTUS allowed private land to be taken for private industry gain which runs afoul of the Fifth Amendment which only allows private property to be taken for public use with just compensation.
I can’t wait to see how this all plays out.
No matter what, the debate over the health care issue will not be settled this week.
If this is allowed I can’t wait to see all the snot nosed kids who voted for Obama when they realize that the law they pushed so hard for does not provide free health care.
Feb 12, 2008 Political
Hillary Clinton has all but conceded the primaries up until Texas and Ohio where she hopes to do well with the large population of Latinos in Texas and the blue collar workers in Ohio. If the exit polling from Virginia is any indication, her Texas plan might just backfire. Exit polls show Obama with a 10 point lead among Latinos, a demographic that Clinton was winning handily and one she will have to win handily in Texas if she is going to compete in the process.
It is hard to tell why the turn around. Perhaps people are getting weary of her and perhaps she has looked like a loser this past week and it turned people off. It is also possible that when she fired her campaign manager, a Latino, that she ticked off the Latino community. Several prominent Latinos (here and here) have already expressed their disgust with the move and once that shock wave starts traveling it will be hard to stop it.
Obama is already the projected winner in Virginia where exits show him winning by a 2:1 margin. He should win DC and Maryland though we will have to wait 90 minutes longer for the Maryland results. A judge ordered the polling places to remain open until 2130 because of an ice storm that caused traffic tie ups all across the state.
I wonder if Hillary is throwing ashtrays and nik naks around the place about now. She has waited all her life for this moment, it is her turn and she is the rightful heir to the thrown and this upstart newbie is ruining it for her. She might still pull out the nomination but with a sweep tonight and a win in the two primaries before 4 March, Obama will have peeled off 10 wins in a row. Sure some of them were small states but the momentum has definitely moved to his camp and Hillary is gasping for breath trying to keep up. Obama looks like a winner while Hillary looks like a confused fighter wondering where the next punch will come from. She is not even in the area any longer having departed for El Paso.
Maybe she is trying to shore up the Latino/Hispanic vote before it is too late.