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04-02-2012, 01:48 PM   #1
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Obama Confident about Health Care law:

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.......President Obama expressed confidence Monday the Supreme Court will not overturn his signature health care law when it issues a ruling later this year on the constitutionality of the landmark legislation, arguing it would be "unprecedented" for the court to make such a dramatic power play over Congress.

Mr. Obama said a decision by the nation's top court to throw out the law would be unprecedented and precisely the kind of action that many conservatives for years have criticized as overreaching "judicial activism."

"Ultimately I am confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress," Mr. Obama said in the Rose Garden appearance.

The Supreme Court heard three days of oral arguments in the case last week and is expected to issue its decision later this year, possibly at the end of the court's session in June.

The president characterized the debate over the law as a "political" one, and said most constitutional law scholars believe the law should not be thrown out.

"That is not just my opinion, that is the opinion of a whole lot of constitutional law professors and academics and judges and lawyers who have examined this law even if they are not particularly sympathetic to this particular piece of legislation or my presidency," said Mr. Obama, himself a former constitutional law professor at the University of Chicago.......
Obama: Supreme Court overturning health care would be "unprecedented" - Political Hotsheet - CBS News

04-02-2012, 02:22 PM   #2
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QuoteQuote:
it would be "unprecedented" for the court to make such a dramatic power play over Congress.
Now SCOTUS ruling something unconstitutional is a power play? It's not their job to rubber stamp laws either.
04-02-2012, 02:33 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
Now SCOTUS ruling something unconstitutional is a power play? It's not their job to rubber stamp laws either.
Normally, a law has to violate some express prohibition in the Constitution or the SCOTUS leaves it alone. You could call that a rubber stamp, perhaps. Most of the arguments we heard from the hearing were on the merits of the Act, which did sound like they are acting like a super congress. As Stephen Colbert noted, the government can draft you, send you to jail or kill you, tax you, and on and on, but not require you to buy insurance?
04-02-2012, 02:44 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
Now SCOTUS ruling something unconstitutional is a power play? It's not their job to rubber stamp laws either.
Of particular interest to me is the concept of an unelected body ruling against a democratically elected body that is fulfilling a major election promise.

04-02-2012, 03:09 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevewig Quote
Of particular interest to me is the concept of an unelected body ruling against a democratically elected body that is fulfilling a major election promise.
That concept is commonly known as the United States Constitution.

Suppose that campaign promise was to, in an effort to enhance national security, pass a law that said law enforcement was no longer required to abide by the provisions of the 4th Amendment? You have a problem with that unelected body saying that's a no-no?
04-02-2012, 03:27 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
That concept is commonly known as the United States Constitution.

Suppose that campaign promise was to, in an effort to enhance national security, pass a law that said law enforcement was no longer required to abide by the provisions of the 4th Amendment? You have a problem with that unelected body saying that's a no-no?
If the American public were stupid enough to elect a government pledged to take this action then they would deserve the results. There are many negatives to a democratic form of government and that is indeed theoretically possible. One thing is for sure, with a democratic election system you get the government that you (collectively) deserve.

That is clearly demonstrated at this point in history.
04-02-2012, 03:33 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevewig Quote
If the American public were stupid enough to elect a government pledged to take this action then they would deserve the results. There are many negatives to a democratic form of government and that is indeed theoretically possible. One thing is for sure, with a democratic election system you get the government that you (collectively) deserve.

That is clearly demonstrated at this point in history.
That isn't necessarily true. In a democratic republic we get the elected officials the majority elects. The losing minority do not "deserve" what befalls them at the hands of the majority.
04-02-2012, 03:37 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
Now SCOTUS ruling something unconstitutional is a power play? It's not their job to rubber stamp laws either.
I think it's clear that this can be neither 'rubber stamping' nor 'activist judging' Never mind a 'power play' by an increasingly-defanged judiciary.


Calling *this* 'Unconstitutional' after 'Citizens United' would of course be purely-ideological. And inconsistent.

There are legitimate questions whether or not this corporate compromise even *is* Constitutional, but not deal-killing ones.

I think it should show that the people should have the right to a public option, and not be forced to buy corporate health care with no other option.

But it likely won't go that way, and it's not the corporate aim, anyway: they aren't making a case that the people should really have options, they want the people to be forced to buy from their oligopoly on *their* terms, even after all this.

04-02-2012, 03:41 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
That concept is commonly known as the United States Constitution.
What part of the constitution does the health care law break?
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Suppose that campaign promise was to, in an effort to enhance national security, pass a law that said law enforcement was no longer required to abide by the provisions of the 4th Amendment? You have a problem with that unelected body saying that's a no-no?
Immaterial, since it has nothing to do with the topic at hand. Stay with the topic, and don't mire the discussion with meaningless trip and deflections.
04-02-2012, 03:49 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
What part of the constitution does the health care law break?
It gives Congress the authority to regulate interstate commerce. Nowhere that can find does it give them the right to mandate it.
As far as deflecting goes; I wasn't the one who started the discussion about the system itself.
04-02-2012, 03:49 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
That concept is commonly known as the United States Constitution.

Suppose that campaign promise was to, in an effort to enhance national security, pass a law that said law enforcement was no longer required to abide by the provisions of the 4th Amendment? You have a problem with that unelected body saying that's a no-no?
What 4th amendment?

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/03/us/justices-approve-strip-searches-for-any-offense.html

Oh, the cops can't touch your balls.
04-02-2012, 04:20 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
It gives Congress the authority to regulate interstate commerce. Nowhere that can find does it give them the right to mandate it.
As far as deflecting goes; I wasn't the one who started the discussion about the system itself.
So, is the difference that Congress can prohibit things in commerce but not require them?

Congress mandated health insurance even at the time of the founding fathers. They also mandated gun ownership at one time. PolitiFact Rhode Island | Harvard Law professor says early Congress mandated health insurance for seamen and gun ownership for most men
04-02-2012, 04:21 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
It gives Congress the authority to regulate interstate commerce. Nowhere that can find does it give them the right to mandate it.
Regulation is not mere passive observance, it will at time involve mandating, and other times eliminating or easing of, regulations. I don't think mandating per se is the central issue, but rather it's if it can be shown that health care has a substantial impact on interstate commerce:

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The Individual Mandate and the Commerce Clause

Article 1, Sec. 8, of the U.S. Constitution gives Congress the power “to regulate Commerce...among the several States.” The Supreme Court has held that this clause gives Congress power over three general regulatory categories:

Regulation of the channels of interstate commerce
Regulation and protection of the instrumentalities of interstate commerce and of persons or things in interstate commerce
Regulation of activities that substantially affect interstate commerce
All of the courts that have considered the constitutionality of the individual mandate agree that the focus in this case is on the third category: regulation of activities that substantially affect interstate commerce.

The Supreme Court has also held that the proper focus is not on the actual impact of individual instances of the regulated activity on interstate commerce. Instead, the question is whether Congress had a rational basis for determining whether the regulated activities, taken in their aggregate, have a substantial impact on interstate commerce. Thus, for example, Congress had the authority to prohibit the possession of home-grown marijuana intended for personal use only—even for medical purposes permitted under state law—because, taken in the aggregate, personal growth and consumption of marijuana could have a substantial impact on an established and lucrative (albeit illegal) interstate market in marijuana (see Gonzales v. Raich, 545 U.S. 1 (2005)).

What are the limits on Congress’s power to regulate interstate commerce? In two decisions over the past two decades, the Supreme Court has drawn a line at what it saw as Congress’s efforts to regulate non-economic activity. In United States v. Lopez, 514 U.S. 549 (1995), the court struck down Congress’s effort under the Commerce Clause to prohibit possession of a firearm within a school zone as an attempt to regulate what was essentially non-economic activity. Similarly, in United States v. Morrison, 529 U.S. 598 (2000), Congress’s attempt under the Commerce Clause to provide a federal civil remedy for victims of gender-motivated violence was struck down as an attempt to regulate non-economic activity.

The focus of the Affordable Care Act cases has been on how to characterize the decision not to purchase insurance coverage. The government argues that the healthcare market is unique in that no one can permanently “opt out” of the market. The question comes down to how an individual decides to pay for the expenses that will inevitably be incurred in that market: through health insurance, out-of-pocket payment, or uncompensated care that is funded by third parties through cost-shifting in the healthcare market.

The three judges who have upheld the constitutionality of the individual mandate agree. Individuals who choose not to purchase health insurance are making an economic decision that, taken in the aggregate, has a substantial impact on the healthcare market. As Judge Steeh wrote, “far from ‘inactivity,’ by choosing to forgo insurance plaintiffs are making an economic decision to try to pay for health care services later, out of pocket, rather than now through the purchase of insurance, collectively shifting billions of dollars...onto other market participants” (see Thomas More Law Center v. Obama).
04-02-2012, 04:39 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
It gives Congress the authority to regulate interstate commerce. Nowhere that can find does it give them the right to mandate it.
As far as deflecting goes; I wasn't the one who started the discussion about the system itself.

That actually gets pretty thin, considering the realities are that the only people who can pay doctors in cash, never mind work at Subway if we have pre-existing conditions.. Are people rich enough to self-insure.
04-02-2012, 04:45 PM   #15
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Okay, I'll concede that regulate could men require. So Congress can certainly then pass laws requiring people to buy a service or product if it benefits society as a whole. Anything that keeps you in better health reduces health care costs, thus benefitting society as a whole, right? Aspirin reduces the risk of heart attack, chocolate reduces stress. So by the "it benefits everybody" theory, why shouldn't they be able to pass a law that requires you to purchase an appropriate amount of chocolate and aspirin every month. NO ONE disputes the health benefits of exercise, so to assure a healthier population, thus reducing health care costs for everyone, people should be required by law to purchase fitness equipment or a membership to a fitness club.
The gummint needs to either enact a single payer system a la Canada and other nations, or stay out of it.
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