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Thread: Is health-care reform constitutional?

  1. #1
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    Default Is health-care reform constitutional?

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...=nl_pmopinions

    http://tinyurl.com/yjtcxrj

    Is health-care reform constitutional?

    By Randy E. Barnett
    Sunday, March 21, 2010

    With the House set to vote on health-care legislation, the congressional debate on the issue seems to be nearing its conclusion. But if the bill does become law, the battle over federal control of health care will inevitably shift to the courts. Virginia's attorney general, Ken Cuccinelli II, has said he will file a legal challenge to the bill, arguing in a column this month that reform legislation "violate[s] the plain text of both the Ninth and Tenth Amendments." On Friday, South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster and Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum announced that they will file a federal lawsuit if health-care reform legislation passes.

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    Senior Member Franco's Avatar
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    I heard today that over 40 states will be contesting just that. This should get really interesting.
    Collecting more taxes than is absolutely necessary is legalized robbery. Calvin Coolidge



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    Senior Member Koolaid's Avatar
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    I can't really say too much about the issue and if it applied to this specific contesting, but I heard an analyst same something to the effect of having medicare and medicaid as precedent that there is a small chance of this working.

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    the argument they are using for it being unconstitutional is that the federal government can't mandate that you buy a product. Which health INSURANCE is a product that some people tend to forget. At last count 38 states have papers filed in their state legislature that says they won't mandate their citizens to have health insurance 2 have already passed it and there still a few more that said they are currently writing the bills. Medicare and Medicaid have nothing to do with the argument about the constitutionality of the bill.

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    Senior Member YardleyLabs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eildydar View Post
    the argument they are using for it being unconstitutional is that the federal government can't mandate that you buy a product. Which health INSURANCE is a product that some people tend to forget. At last count 38 states have papers filed in their state legislature that says they won't mandate their citizens to have health insurance 2 have already passed it and there still a few more that said they are currently writing the bills. Medicare and Medicaid have nothing to do with the argument about the constitutionality of the bill.
    Actually, nothing in the legislation mandates that you buy insurance. However, if you do not you are subject to a tax. Employers face a mandate which is justified by interstate commerce considerations. States do not force a mandate but lose Federal funding if they do not go along. I think that a successful challenge is highly unlikely. However, the Court has become so political that anything is possible.

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    how is the mandate for individuals different than for employers. You either do it or you are faced with a fine, correct?

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    Senior Member YardleyLabs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eildydar View Post
    how is the mandate for individuals different than for employers. You either do it or you are faced with a fine, correct?
    There are no real limits of what Congress can do in establishing a tax. They are perfectly able to say, for example, that people without health insurance impose a cost on the general public and must pay a tax to fund programs to treat the uninsured. An individual is then free to choose whether to buy insurance or pay the tax. What would make that un-Constitutional?

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    Senior Member Hoosier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by YardleyLabs View Post
    There are no real limits of what Congress can do in establishing a tax. They are perfectly able to say, for example, that people without health insurance impose a cost on the general public and must pay a tax to fund programs to treat the uninsured. An individual is then free to choose whether to buy insurance or pay the tax. What would make that un-Constitutional?

    I think you're basically saying there is no limit to the power of the federal government. If they can force you into anything they want by imposing a tax, and then jail for not paying that tax; then their power is limitless. Have we come to that point? I think we are getting real close. There has to be a line they can't cross, where would you draw that line?

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    Senior Member Franco's Avatar
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    This entire Health Care fiasco reminds me of a famous Thomas Jefferson quote;

    When the People fear the Government, we have Tyranny.
    When the Government fears the People, we have Freedom!

    We have elected Tyrants!
    Collecting more taxes than is absolutely necessary is legalized robbery. Calvin Coolidge



  10. #10
    Senior Member YardleyLabs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier View Post
    I think you're basically saying there is no limit to the power of the federal government. If they can force you into anything they want by imposing a tax, and then jail for not paying that tax; then their power is limitless. Have we come to that point? I think we are getting real close. There has to be a line they can't cross, where would you draw that line?
    There are many limits of Federal power, but not too many when it comes to taxation. These were granted in the original Constitution except for those granted in the 16th Amendment ("The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration."). Even at the time of the Revolution, the issue was not the taxes levied but the fact that they were levied without representation. That is the people's defense. Vote the bums out. Politicians have long known that the electorate is more likely to vote politicians out for raising taxes than for any other act.
    Last edited by YardleyLabs; 03-22-2010 at 03:50 PM.

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