Federal judge rules ObamaCare is unconstitutional in its entirety

posted at 4:23 pm on January 31, 2011 by Allahpundit

A nice win, if only because it’s fun to watch the left sweat, but as we’ve discussed before, these lower-court decisions are virtually meaningless. There’s no question that the Supreme Court will eventually take this matter up, and given how profound the constitutional objection to the mandate is, there’s no chance that they’ll let “deference” to lower-court rulings shape their opinion on the matter. What we’re doing with these district court rulings — which now stand evenly split on ObamaCare, two finding it constitutional and two not — is going through the procedural motions until the Supremes get down to business. The only bit of significance these decisions might have is that they may move the Overton window of possible outcomes in Anthony Kennedy’s mind. After O-Care was passed, I remember some constitutional law experts citing the Court’s liberal Commerce Clause jurisprudence and claiming that they’d probably uphold it on something like an 8-1 vote. That seems impossible now; I’d bet 6-3 at worst, with a very fair chance of a 5-4 win for conservatives. The more anti-ObamaCare lower court rulings there are, the more political cover Kennedy has to vote with the conservative wing of the Court if he’s so inclined. If.

Here’s a PDF of the opinion. The judge, Roger Vinson, is a Reagan appointee who didn’t hide his skepticism about the law during oral arguments, so the baseline ruling isn’t surprising. A fun hypothetical about the government’s power to force citizens to buy things they don’t want to:

Or what if two of the purported “unique” factors [of the health-care market] — inevitable participation coupled with cost-shifting — are present? For example, virtually no one can opt out of the housing market (broadly defined) and a majority of people will at some point buy a home. The vast majority of those homes will be financed with a mortgage, a large number of which (particularly in difficult economic times, as we have seen most recently) will go into default, thereby cost-shifting billions of dollars to third parties and the federal government. Should Congress thus have power under the Commerce Clause to preemptively regulate and require individuals above a certain income level to purchase a home financed with a mortgage (and secured with mortgage guaranty insurance) in order to add stability to the housing and financial markets (and to guard against the possibility of future cost-shifting because of a defaulted mortgage), on the theory that most everyone is currently, or inevitably one day will be, active in the housing market?

The left will scoff at the supposed absurdity of his example, but there’s nothing absurd about it. This sort of sweeping power to compel purchases to achieve a public good is precisely what’s at stake in the mandate.

What is a bit surprising is that Vinson went further and held that the mandate isn’t “severable” from the rest of the law — which means that the whole law is unconstitutional, not just the part that requires people to buy insurance. That’s unusual insofar as courts like to be modest when striking down statutes; if they can find a section of it unconstitutional while preserving the rest of it, they’ll do so out of respect for the democratic branches that enacted it. In this case, however, as we’ve been told by Democrats many times, you can’t have universal health care unless you force people to pay for it. Cutting the mandate out of O-Care and keeping the rest of the scheme intact would create a nightmare scenario in which people avoid buying insurance until they get sick, with insurers required to accept them by the new rules governing preexisting conditions. Before long, that cost burden would drive most insurers into bankruptcy, with the golden age of a public option or single-payer soon to follow.

Which is to say, if you’re going to kill this beast, you’d better kill all of it. Vinson on severability:

In the final analysis, this Act has been analogized to a finely crafted watch, and that seems to fit. It has approximately 450 separate pieces, but one essential piece (the individual mandate) is defective and must be removed. It cannot function as originally designed. There are simply too many moving parts in the Act and too many provisions dependent (directly and indirectly) on the individual mandate and other health insurance provisions — which, as noted, were the chief engines that drove the entire legislative effort — for me to try and dissect out the proper from the improper, and the able-to-stand-alone from the unable-to-stand-alone. Such a quasi-legislative undertaking would be particularly inappropriate in light of the fact that any statute that might conceivably be left over after this analysis is complete would plainly not serve Congress’ main purpose and primary objective in passing the Act. The statute is, after all, called “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act,” not “The Abstinence Education and Bone Marrow Density Testing Act.” The Act, like a defectively designed watch, needs to be redesigned and reconstructed by the watchmaker.

If Congress intends to implement health care reform — and there would appear to be widespread agreement across the political spectrum that reform is needed — it should do a comprehensive examination of the Act and make a legislative determination as to which of its hundreds of provisions and sections will work as intended without the individual mandate, and which will not. It is Congress that should consider and decide these quintessentially legislative questions, and not the courts…

Because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void. This has been a difficult decision to reach, and I am aware that it will have indeterminable implications. At a time when there is virtually unanimous agreement that health care reform is needed in this country, it is hard to invalidate and strike down a statute titled “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.”

A fun fact about ObamaCare: Unlike virtually every other federal statute, it contains no “severabililty clause” at the end requesting that if any part of it should be held unconstitutional in court, the rest should be preserved as good law. Vinson actually mentions that fact in the opinion and notes that an earlier draft of the law did contain such a clause, suggesting that it was deliberately dropped because even Congress agrees that you can’t sever any one part from such an elaborate scheme. The truth, however, may be more prosaic: According to a Democratic aide who spoke to the Times back in November, the clause was omitted because of … an “oversight.” Oops!


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I’m not sure you do either. If it’s a tax, you’re contradicting President Obama. If it’s not, then you’re contradicting what Obama said earlier before he contradicted himself.

gryphon202 on January 31, 2011 at 8:23 PM

I don’t care if it’s nominally a tax or not a tax. And if I did, I’m not sure how my position relative to President Obama’s previous statements would be germane to the discussion.

You didn’t address anything I said.

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:22 PM

That’s because you didn’t say anything.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:26 PM

Had Obama just called it a tax to begin, he would have been fine. His sneaky politics may get the best of him in the end.

Daemonocracy on January 31, 2011 at 8:24 PM

Had Obama called it a tax to begin with, he would have had a much harder time getting certain congressweasels on-board with it. We the people do tend to get a little skittish about tax increases.

gryphon202 on January 31, 2011 at 8:26 PM

I don’t care if it’s nominally a tax or not a tax. And if I did, I’m not sure how my position relative to President Obama’s previous statements would be germane to the discussion.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:26 PM

Quite germane, in that some of your arguments parallel Obama’s and others contradict him. So either you don’t know how the bill works, or he doesn’t. Maybe we conservatives are right, and in the end it’s all just an enormous power grab, the particulars of which don’t really matter in the end.

gryphon202 on January 31, 2011 at 8:28 PM

Quite germane, in that some of your arguments parallel Obama’s and others contradict him. So either you don’t know how the bill works, or he doesn’t.

gryphon202 on January 31, 2011 at 8:28 PM

Calling it a tax or a penalty doesn’t change the mechanics of how the bill works. You do realize that, right? It’s just a semantics debate. Which is why I don’t really care about it.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:30 PM

That’s because you didn’t say anything.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:26 PM

Well, I’ll gladly repeat. If what the IRS commissioner holds true, they will only go after refunds.

So what is stopping Americans, using services like e-file (which you linked to) from reducing their refund, increasing their take home and eliminating their entire ObamaCare tax?

At my company, you adjust your deductions right on your electronic paystub. It takes 2 clicks.

You said Americans are not suave (sic) enough to do this.

So

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:31 PM

You didn’t address anything I said.

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:22 PM

And now you have a basic idea how crr6 operates.

Aviator on January 31, 2011 at 8:32 PM

So how is this not pinning ObamaCare’s success on Americans’ inability to understand a simple W4?

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:33 PM

I have every confidence that the lawyers that run this country, at all levels, will screw us…for our own (collective) good of course.

Dr. ZhivBlago on January 31, 2011 at 8:34 PM

Calling it a tax or a penalty doesn’t change the mechanics of how the bill works. You do realize that, right? It’s just a semantics debate. Which is why I don’t really care about it.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:30 PM

Actually it does matter but go ahead in live in your little world. As this thing moves along in the courts you will see that your little dream will not survive. Why don’t you get a job or start a company and do something for yourself? Are you a child in an adult’s body? Seriously, you have some growing up to do.

CWforFreedom on January 31, 2011 at 8:34 PM

Well, I’ll gladly repeat. If what the IRS commissioner holds true, they will only go after refunds.

So what is stopping Americans, using services like e-file (which you linked to) from reducing their refund, increasing their take home and eliminating their entire ObamaCare tax?

At my company, you adjust your deductions right on your electronic paystub. It takes 2 clicks.

You said Americans are not suave (sic) enough to do this.

So

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:31 PM

So let me get this straight. It’s your position that Americans will:
1) Drop their health insurance (obviously, this only applies if they already have it, as most people do)
2) Refuse to purchase health insurance.
3) Refuse to pay the tax penalty.
4) Tinker around with their W-4 to reduce or completely eliminate their tax refund, each year.
And that this will happen in a large enough amount to undermine the system set up by the PPACA.

Is that characterization of your position correct?

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:38 PM

Actually it does matter but go ahead in live in your little world.

Apparently it does matter for the tax and spending clause argument (although I’m still not sure why). But that was never the strongest argument for the mandate anyway.

As this thing moves along in the courts you will see that your little dream will not survive.

Er, ok. It’s hardly my dream.

Why don’t you get a job or start a company and do something for yourself?

Already have, thanks.

Are you a child in an adult’s body?

Uh, no.

Seriously, you have some growing up to do.

CWforFreedom on January 31, 2011 at 8:34 PM

Probably!

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:41 PM

So how is this not pinning ObamaCare’s success on Americans’ inability to understand a simple W4?

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:33 PM

You’d be surprised how much of our society depends on rational ignorance.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:42 PM

So let me get this straight. It’s your position that Americans will:
1) Drop their health insurance (obviously, this only applies if they already have it, as most people do)
2) Refuse to purchase health insurance.
3) Refuse to pay the tax penalty.
4) Tinker around with their W-4 to reduce or completely eliminate their tax refund, each year.
And that this will happen in a large enough amount to undermine the system set up by the PPACA.

Is that characterization of your position correct?

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:38 PM

No, some of us will just stop playing the confiscatory game with the thieves in DC.

darwin-t on January 31, 2011 at 8:42 PM

You’d be surprised how much of our society depends on rational ignorance.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:42 PM

You seem to thrive on it.

darwin-t on January 31, 2011 at 8:43 PM

Crr you have done nothing for yourself. Now that you are being so open why do want the fed to be your parent? Can you not take care of yourself?

In the long run the tax issue will matter. The little game your boy played by saying it was not a tax then saying it is a tax will not play well down the road.

CWforFreedom on January 31, 2011 at 8:43 PM

Er, ok. It’s hardly my dream.

Oh that is right like the little child in a grown person’s body you want government supplied health care. Sheesh grow up ….faster.

CWforFreedom on January 31, 2011 at 8:45 PM

Oof, just read the NPC section of the opinion, and it sucks big time. That seems to be the argument conservative judges are having the most trouble with (Judge Hudson’s NPC section was roundly criticized as well).

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:46 PM

So let me get this straight. It’s your position that Americans will:
1) Drop their health insurance (obviously, this only applies if they already have it, as most people do)
2) Refuse to purchase health insurance.
3) Refuse to pay the tax penalty.
4) Tinker around with their W-4 to reduce or completely eliminate their tax refund, each year.
And that this will happen in a large enough amount to undermine the system set up by the PPACA.

Is that characterization of your position correct?

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:38 PM

1) We’re talking those without insurance
2) They are already refusing or cannot afford it
3) You said you have it deducted
4) They only have to reset it once and it takes moments.

When people see $750 magically gone from a refund they desperately needed due to ObamaCare, you bet they’ll take the 5 minutes to make the adjustment.

You don’t think ObamaCare opponents will be broadcasting this simple loophole from the rooftops?

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:47 PM

You’d be surprised how much of our society depends on rational ignorance.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:42 PM

You seem to thrive on it.

darwin-t on January 31, 2011 at 8:43 PM

I know that was supposed to be a really cool-sounding insult, but it doesn’t really make sense and it shows you don’t know what rational ignorance means. But hey, nice try.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:47 PM

Oof, just read the NPC section of the opinion, and it sucks big time. That seems to be the argument conservative judges are having the most trouble with (Judge Hudson’s NPC section was roundly criticized as well).

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:46 PM

Thanx Judge Judy

darwin-t on January 31, 2011 at 8:48 PM

The Act, like a defectively designed watch, needs to be redesigned and reconstructed by the watchmaker.

Who knew Pelosi was such a terrible watchmaker? If the ticker’s broke, you must invoke.

Rovin on January 31, 2011 at 4:50 PM

John Cameron Swayze could not be reached for comment. BTW I hear his son Junior on the graveyard weekend shift on the C-BS station in NYC.

Del Dolemonte on January 31, 2011 at 8:48 PM

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:47 PM

Could you answer yes or no? Cause I’m pretty sure the answer is yes, and even you seem to be dimly aware of how patently ridiculous that is.

3) You said you have it deducted

if you refuse to pay the tax penalty in the first place, yeah. It says that right in the article I linked to earlier. Jesus Christ man, could you do me a favor and just read up on the law for awhile? Just 30 mins or so. Go ahead. Seriously. Because this is like the 4th time where I’ve had to correct you on an extremely basic point and it’s getting realllllyyyy old.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:52 PM

What is up with this:

http://volokh.com/2011/01/31/surpassingly-curious/

Now the regime is sending out an “anonymous” official to question the judge’s ruling, and the reporters all agree to let the official stay anonymous even though he’s speaking for the WH?

B-I-Z-Z-A-R-O WORLD! Wow!

UnderstandingisPower on January 31, 2011 at 9:02 PM

CWforFreedom on January 31, 2011 at 8:34 PM

It’s pointless. My experience with him/her is that s/he fails to comprehend the most basic of points. Truly, my experience here was the first time that I have ever had someone with whom I was conversing (I use the term loosely) fail to comprehend a single sentence I wrote. A single sentence. Words fail. At that point, I was almost on “auto-ignore.” That sensation of beating your head on a wall, when it feels so good when you stop? Welcome.

DrMagnolias on January 31, 2011 at 9:05 PM

So the whole linchpin of ObamaCare controlling costs is Americans being too lazy and/or stupid to understand a simple W4.

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:10 PM

Well, the Obama administration has amply demonstrated that they really do think Americans are that dumb.

Occasionally, I’m tempted to agree with them. (*cough* November 2008 *cough*)

Missy on January 31, 2011 at 9:07 PM

I see crr6 got back from the pharmacy…

Keemo on January 31, 2011 at 9:09 PM

I emphasized once before, but it bears repeating again: this case is not whether the Act is wise or unwise legislation, or whether it will solve or exacerbatethe myriad problems in our health care system. In fact, it is not really about ourhealth care system at all. It is principally about our federalist system, and it raisesvery important issues regarding the Constitutional role of the federal government.James Madison, the chief architect of our federalist system, once famouslyobserved:If men were angels, no government would be necessary.If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internalcontrols on government would be necessary. In framing agovernment which is to be administered by men overmen, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enablethe government to control the governed; and in the nextplace oblige it to control itself.The Federalist No. 51, at 348 (N.Y. Heritage Press ed., 1945) (“The Federalist”).2In establishing our government, the Founders endeavored to resolve Madison’sidentified “great difficulty” by creating a system of dual sovereignty under which“[t]he powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal governmentare few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments arenumerous and indefinite.” The Federalist No. 45, at 311 (Madison); see also U.S.Const. art. I, § 1 (setting forth the specific legislative powers “herein granted” toCongress). When the Bill of Rights was later added to the Constitution in 1791, theTenth Amendment reaffirmed that relationship: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

~Judge Vinson

My new hero.

txmomof6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:16 PM

UnderstandingisPower on January 31, 2011 at 9:02 PM

I just read that over at instapundit… This guy is so in over his head. The melt down is coming, I’m convinced of that.

Keemo on January 31, 2011 at 9:17 PM

Because this is like the 4th time where I’ve had to correct you on an extremely basic point and it’s getting realllllyyyy old.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:52 PM

your such a drama queen. Sad day in your legal whore house, we know.

ted c on January 31, 2011 at 9:20 PM

It’s pointless. My experience with him/her is that s/he fails to comprehend the most basic of points.

DrMagnolias on January 31, 2011 at 9:05 PM

Funny, my experience with you is that you’re incapable of making the most basic of points. Anytime you manage to state a somewhat coherent thought, you’re forced to backtrack within minutes. The worst part is, you blame your failure to make an argument on others’ inability to comprehend it. It really is like a baby getting angry at its parent because she can’t understand why the baby is crying.

That sensation of beating your head on a wall, when it feels so good when you stop?

DrMagnolias on January 31, 2011 at 9:05 PM

I’m not really familiar with that sensation, Magnolia. But I’m not surprised you are!

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:21 PM

Because this is like the 4th time where I’ve had to correct you on an extremely basic point and it’s getting realllllyyyy old.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:52 PM

Believe me,
I tire of your lying long before you do.

Inanemergencydial on January 31, 2011 at 9:22 PM

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 8:31 PM

So let me get this straight. It’s your position that Americans will:
1) Drop their health insurance (obviously, this only applies if they already have it, as most people do)
2) Refuse to purchase health insurance.
3) Refuse to pay the tax penalty.
4) Tinker around with their W-4 to reduce or completely eliminate their tax refund, each year.
And that this will happen in a large enough amount to undermine the system set up by the PPACA.

Is that characterization of your position correct?

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:38 PM

The smart money will drop insurance altogether, and pay the, so far, small and non-enforceable penalty. If you get sick then you’ll just sign up for insurance then, since pre-existing conditions won’t be grounds for denial. It’s the cost effective way to go.

DFCtomm on January 31, 2011 at 9:23 PM

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:21 PM

Double the dose tonight, get some sleep, and prepare yourself best you can for much more of what you see taking place with your loser of a president/party. You’re on the wrong side of most every issue as is your party. One year from now, you will not admit you’re a Liberal out of pure shame for what you and yours did to so many people.

Keemo on January 31, 2011 at 9:28 PM

Coulter just nailed it. If a Democrat Congress decided it can force every American to buy insurance, then nothing’s to stop a Republican Congress from forcing every American to buy a bible and a gun.

John the Libertarian on January 31, 2011 at 9:28 PM

Coulter just nailed it. If a Democrat Congress decided it can force every American to buy insurance, then nothing’s to stop a Republican Congress from forcing every American to buy a bible

John the Libertarian on January 31, 2011 at 9:28 PM

How on earth does that argument work?.

As for the gun example…

Heh.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:32 PM

Love to stay and play with the druggy troll, but I have a 22 ounce T-bone waiting and a wife who’s ready to celebrate the actions of a freedom loving Judge who can actually read and comprehend the Constitution.

Cheers everyone… It’s been a good day for freedom here in America.

Keemo on January 31, 2011 at 9:32 PM

“I note that in 2008, then-Senator Obama supported a health care reform proposal that did not include an individual mandate because he was at that time strongly opposed to the idea, stating that, ‘If a mandate was the solution, we can try that to solve homelessness by mandating everybody to buy a house,’” Judge Vinson wrote in a footnote toward the end of his 78-page ruling Monday.

John the Libertarian on January 31, 2011 at 9:36 PM

I’m sure this has been pointed by previous commenters, but am I the only one who remembers Obama campaigning AGAINST the health care mandate by saying, ‘If a mandate was the solution, we can try that to solve homelessness by mandating everybody to buy a house.’?

How does that man play both sides of the coin on EVERY discussion?

Troika37 on January 31, 2011 at 9:39 PM

How on earth does that argument work?.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:32 PM

Coulter said it’s far more beneficial for every American to buy a gun and a bible than to buy health insurance.

See how it works?

John the Libertarian on January 31, 2011 at 9:40 PM

Coulter said it’s far more beneficial for every American to buy a gun and a bible than to buy health insurance.
See how it works?

John the Libertarian on January 31, 2011 at 9:40 PM

No, it doesn’t work. The constitutional arguments for the law have nothing to do with whether it’s “beneficial” for the government to mandate the purchase of health insurance. Coulter’s playing to the lowest common denominator. That’s you, incidentally.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:47 PM

So let me get this straight. It’s your position that Americans will:
1) Drop their health insurance (obviously, this only applies if they already have it, as most people do)
2) Refuse to purchase health insurance.
3) Refuse to pay the tax penalty.
4) Tinker around with their W-4 to reduce or completely eliminate their tax refund, each year.
And that this will happen in a large enough amount to undermine the system set up by the PPACA.

Is that characterization of your position correct?

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:38 PM

I haven’t read the entire thread, but let me tell ya, I’ve already done #1, #2, and #4. And if #3 ever comes to pass, I’ll do that one too.

So, yes, there are plenty of Americans who will undermine the system. We don’t believe in Communism.

Dominion on January 31, 2011 at 9:49 PM

Oof, just read the NPC section of the opinion, and it sucks big time.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:46 PM

Wow.

Coulter’s playing to the lowest common denominator. That’s you, incidentally.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:47 PM

Calling people stupid = admitting you’re losing the argument.

Del Dolemonte on January 31, 2011 at 9:51 PM

I see crr6 got back from the pharmacy…

Keemo on January 31, 2011 at 9:09 PM

Can I have some Drugs?

Del Dolemonte on January 31, 2011 at 9:52 PM

Oof, just read the NPC section of the opinion, and it sucks big time.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:46 PM

Wow.

Yep. The commerce clause section is nearly as bad.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:56 PM

It is Congress that should consider and decide these quintessentially legislative questions, and not the courts…

What a concept!

I like this judge.

tom on January 31, 2011 at 9:56 PM

The various regime politicians and hacks born of The Chicago Way and its Mafia heritage ought to realize that the gun and “health insurance” are synonymous.

viking01 on January 31, 2011 at 9:57 PM

Can I have some Drugs?

Del Dolemonte on January 31, 2011 at 9:52 PM

psssst…I’m mixin’ up a huge batch of coffee and Baileys.

Wanna be my distributor on the East Coast?

Keep this hush hush.

BobMbx on January 31, 2011 at 9:58 PM

BruthaMan on January 31, 2011 at 6:22 PM

OMG what you got going on is serious…my MIL has had foot problems, but never at your level. I opened the “sock” link and the product looks intriguing to me. Innovation these days!

I have to deal with my own lil’ Miss PPF with her walking on her tippy toes all her life. I will have that taken care of this week. I ask her often to walk with her feet planted (normal) and she does it for like 6 seconds. Several times she’s complained on pain on the calf area.

Who knows? Maybe I will get aside from special shoes, a pair of socks like those you shared with us, Ted.

Thanks for the prayers! :D I am thinking antibiotics are not working for me anymore; sore throat now and it’s not going away? WTF? Three days left. At least got my strength back. Geez!

ProudPalinFan on January 31, 2011 at 9:58 PM

but as
we’ve discussed before, these lower-court decisions are virtually
meaningless.

So meaningless that you didn’t bother to report it at all, let alone make the title font red…

spinach.chin on January 31, 2011 at 9:59 PM

Because this is like the 4th time where I’ve had to correct you on an extremely basic point and it’s getting realllllyyyy old.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:52 PM

Your frustration is completely understandable, but you are only compounding your folly.

So let’s recap:

1) You defended ObamaCare against charges of totalitarianism by insisting the mandate is unenforceable

2) Then you must have realized this wasn’t terribly smart, as the mandate is supposedly the core of ObamaCare’s ability to control costs

3) Then you argued that it doesn’t matter that the mandate is unenforceable, because Americans are too stupid to notice the money taken from their tax refund and too lazy change their exemptions at work.

4) And my favorite. This obvious loophole will never, ever, never get out, despite modern communication technology, such as the internet, radio and television

5) And the part that hasn’t dawned on you yet. If people are too stupid and lazy to change their W4, they certainly are too stupid and lazy and cheap to buy insurance as a result of the penalty- which is much more expensive than the mandate. This was the whole point of the mandate to begin with- to get them to join the pool.

That about cover it?

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 9:59 PM

The judge also makes frequent reference to the Federalist Papers, and lays out the dual sovereignty of our federal government (national and states).

Then he goes into enumerated powers and reserved powers, and the Tenth Amendment. All by page 2.

I definitely like this judge.

tom on January 31, 2011 at 10:00 PM

Keemo on January 31, 2011 at 9:32 PM

Buen provecho, Kimo y Sra.! Filete de brontosaurio, eh?

ProudPalinFan on January 31, 2011 at 10:00 PM

No, it doesn’t work. The constitutional arguments for the law have nothing to do with whether it’s “beneficial” for the government to mandate the purchase of health insurance. Coulter’s playing to the lowest common denominator. That’s you, incidentally.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:47 PM

If it’s not ‘beneficial’ then how does it fall into your ‘general welfare’ logic?

Fighton03 on January 31, 2011 at 10:00 PM

Your frustration is completely understandable

Yep. I take it you took a little time-out to read up? Thanks, I really appreciate it.

1) You defended ObamaCare against charges of totalitarianism by insisting the mandate is unenforceable

You guys keep saying that, but I seriously have no idea where you’re getting that from. I never said anything remotely like that. You guys kept saying you’ll get hanged or thrown in jail or something, and I just pointed out that’s not the case.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:04 PM

ProudPalinFan, hope you get better. All that, and this nasty winter storm is coming through this week too.

BruthaMan on January 31, 2011 at 7:33 PM

Thanks, love to you too, I am just stunned when stuff like this happens and a simple solution doesn’t cut it-just like my situation; bedridden for a whole weekend, weak as if I was at the hospital recuperating from something-before, during and after antibiotics may or not be working.

My mantra:

I am sick of being sick.

ProudPalinFan on January 31, 2011 at 10:04 PM

Slightly O/T but please cut me some slack.

We’re talking those without insurance

Hey, I’m one of those people with out insurance. I ‘had’ insurance through my employer until a month ago, when the Insurer dropped us. They sent a nice letter explaining that it was because of the Affordable Care Act. They weren’t able to comply with it with my company’s policy so they cancelled it. Hmmm; maybe they were only using 79.9 % of the premiums for patient care?
Yesterday when I paid full retail at the Pharmacy for my wife’s heart medicine, I was telling our local Pharmacist about it and she said “doesn’t seem so affordable to me”. That made me chuckle.

Red State State of Mind on January 31, 2011 at 10:08 PM

As for the gun example…

Heh.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:32 PM

Interesting. From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Militia_Acts_of_1792

That every citizen, so enrolled and notified, shall, within six months thereafter, provide himself with a good musket or firelock, a sufficient bayonet and belt, two spare flints, and a knapsack, a pouch, with a box therein, to contain not less than twenty four cartridges,

The equivalent in the health care debate would a law that says “each person shall provide for their own health care.”

Works for me.

pedestrian on January 31, 2011 at 10:10 PM

You guys keep saying that, but I seriously have no idea where you’re getting that from. I never said anything remotely like that. You guys kept saying you’ll get hanged or thrown in jail or something, and I just pointed out that’s not the case.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:04 PM

Quite the opposite. It’s unenforceable. You posted the link yourself.

How about the rest of it? The plan really sounds hairbrained when you have it read back to you, doesn’t it?

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 10:11 PM

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:26 PM

I don’t care if it’s nominally a tax or not a tax. And if I did, I’m not sure how my position relative to President Obama’s previous statements would be germane to the discussion.

Planning on going in front of a judge and admitting… nay, arguing that your client has a long history of being openly disingenuous about the matters at hand, are you?

I know it doesn’t go down well with local Superior Court judges. Can’t imagine it works any better going up the food chain.

JohnGalt23 on January 31, 2011 at 10:11 PM

I’m liking this whole Mandate thing after I heard Coulter’s comments tonight.
So will we mandated to buy the King James version or will the FEDs let us choose?
Will petite women be given a waiver and only mandated to carry derringers?

Red State State of Mind on January 31, 2011 at 10:13 PM

Will petite women be given a waiver and only mandated to carry derringers?

Red State State of Mind on January 31, 2011 at 10:13 PM

Lady smith, +P is strictly optional.

Fighton03 on January 31, 2011 at 10:16 PM

Quite the opposite. It’s unenforceable. You posted the link yourself.

The IRS Comm. doesn’t say it’s unenforceable, and neither did I. You’re making that up.

How about the rest of it? The plan really sounds hairbrained when you have it read back to you, doesn’t it?

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 10:11 PM

The rest of it doesn’t make any sense because it’s all premised on your mistaken belief that I’ve said it’s unenforceable. I never said that.

Look, I know it hurts your ego to be proven objectively wrong time after time by the same person, in the same two threads, on the same day. But that’s no excuse for making up your own imaginary narrative where I’m in fact the one that’s wrong and you’re perfectly reasonable. It might make you feel better, which is nice. But I think that overall, it’s not a helpful thing to do. You’re only hurting yourself, Chuck.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:21 PM

(“[T]he [Constitution] protects against the Government; it does not leave us at the mercy of noblesse oblige. We would not uphold an unconstitutional statute merely because the Government promised to use it responsibly

Another quote from the opinion of my new hero, Judge Vinson. Don’t know what Crr6 is going on about, the opinion is awesome so far. Still reading.

txmomof6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:22 PM

Ann Coulter considers Bill Maher one of her good friends and that takes her out of any equation.

darwin-t on January 31, 2011 at 10:26 PM

know it doesn’t go down well with local Superior Court judges. Can’t imagine it works any better going up the food chain.

JohnGalt23 on January 31, 2011 at 10:11 PM

Exactly. You see though that many on the left like CRR have come to believe that dishonesty is normal. (sadly they may be right) . Luckily the courts have a great distaste for it. They soon will find that out.

CWforFreedom on January 31, 2011 at 10:27 PM

Judge Vinson’s analysis of the Necessary and Proper Clause is that it is a facilitator of an enumerated power not an independent power itself. He points out the weakness of the government’s argument here,

It points out that the defendants’ are essentially admitting that the Act will have serious negative consequences, e.g.,encouraging people to forego health insurance until medical services are needed,increasing premiums and costs for everyone, and thereby bankrupting the health insurance industry — unless the individual mandate is imposed. Thus, rather than being used to implement or facilitate enforcement of the Act’s insurance industry reforms, the individual mandate is actually being used as the means to avoid the adverse consequences of the Act itself. Such an application of the Necessary and Proper Clause would have the perverse effect of enabling Congress to pass ill-conceived, or economically disruptive statutes, secure in the knowledge that the more dysfunctional the results of the statute are, the more essential or “necessary”the statutory fix would be. Under such a rationale, the more harm the statute does,the more power Congress could assume for itself under the Necessary and ProperClause. This result would, of course, expand the Necessary and Proper Clause far beyond its original meaning, and allow Congress to exceed the powers specifically enumerated in Article I. Surely this is not what the Founders anticipated, nor how that Clause should operate.

txmomof6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:35 PM

Judge Vinson’s analysis of the Necessary and Proper Clause is that it is a facilitator of an enumerated power not an independent power itself. He points out the weakness of the government’s argument here,

“should congress, in the execution of its powers, adopt measures which are prohibited by the constitution; or should congress, under the pretext of executing its powers, pass laws for the accomplishment of objects not intrusted to the government; it would become the painful duty of this tribunal . . . to say, that such an act was not the law of the land.”

McCulloch v. Maryland, 17 US at 423.

Revenant on January 31, 2011 at 10:45 PM

the opinion is awesome so far. Still reading.

txmomof6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:22 PM

It really is an interesting read very logical, well thought out, with historical documentation to back things up…

As an IT geek…it is looking at a code dump and deciphering what each line of code means and trying to figure out how this program could fit into a 200+ year running program.

The Judges Decision was an Exit 0 IMO.

F15Mech on January 31, 2011 at 10:50 PM

txmomof6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:35 PM

Nice quote. Judge Vinson really understands the issue, starting with what the NPC really is and goes from there. Really leaves crr6 standing in the dust gasping for air.

pedestrian on January 31, 2011 at 10:51 PM

Oof, just read the NPC section of the opinion, and it sucks big time.
That seems to be the argument conservative judges are having the
most trouble with (Judge Hudson ’s NPC section was roundly criticized
as well).
crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 8:46 PM

Psst… apparently, this guy has better credentials than you.

spinach.chin on January 31, 2011 at 10:55 PM

Psst… apparently, this guy girl has better credentials than you.

spinach.chin on January 31, 2011 at 10:55 PM

CCR6 is a female.

F15Mech on January 31, 2011 at 10:58 PM

CCR6 is a female.

F15Mech on January 31, 2011 at 10:58 PM

Sorry CRR6

F15Mech on January 31, 2011 at 10:58 PM

CCR6 is a female.
F15Mech on January 31, 2011 at 10:58 PM

The “guy” I was referencing was the judge, not crr6.

spinach.chin on January 31, 2011 at 11:03 PM

Where in the Constitution is the Federal government charged with maintaining people’s health?

nazo311 on January 31, 2011 at 11:07 PM

Where in the Constitution is the Federal government charged with maintaining people’s health?

nazo311 on January 31, 2011 at 11:07 PM

According to crr6′s professors, it’s the part where it says “Congress shall make no law respecting…” and lists a bunch of things. Since health care is not one of those it must be OK.

pedestrian on January 31, 2011 at 11:14 PM

Just got home from work and just started dancin’ in the end zone!!!

abobo on January 31, 2011 at 11:18 PM

The rest of it doesn’t make any sense because it’s all premised on your mistaken belief that I’ve said it’s unenforceable. I never said that.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:21 PM

The IRS commissioner said in the link you posted. Here it is again:

I think there’s a couple important points that I would make, though, about our role in health reform. One is these are not the kinds of things—check the box whether you’re here or not—that we send agents out about. These are things where you get a letter from us. Second is Congress was very careful to make sure that there was nothing too punitive in this bill. … First of all, there’s no criminal sanctions for not paying this, and there’s no ability to levy a bank account or do seizures, some of the other tools.

No seizures, no levies, no criminal prosecution. Just a letter.

The mandate is unenforceable.

Chuck Schick on January 31, 2011 at 11:33 PM

Psst… apparently, this guy has better credentials than you.

spinach.chin on January 31, 2011 at 10:55 PM

The judge? He certainly has more experience, but FWIW I go to a much better law school than Vandy, and I’ll be working for a much more prestigious firm than Beggs & Lane this summer. Not that it matters…but hey, you’re the one who brought up credentials.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:51 PM

The constitutional arguments for the law have nothing to do with whether it’s “beneficial” for the government to mandate the purchase of health insurance.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 9:47 PM

Sure they do. You’re too clever by half. That’s why the Coulters of the world have to kick you under the table from time to time.

John the Libertarian on January 31, 2011 at 11:55 PM

Nice quote. Judge Vinson really understands the issue, starting with what the NPC really is and goes from there.

pedestrian on January 31, 2011 at 10:51 PM

I really don’t think that’s correct. He admits the law is “necessary,” but then strikes it down because it’s not “proper,” and it’s not proper because, well…he just thinks it goes too far.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:55 PM

The judge? He certainly has more experience, but FWIW I go to a much better law school than Vandy, and I’ll be working for a much more prestigious firm than Beggs & Lane this summer. Not that it matters…but hey, you’re the one who brought up credentials.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:51 PM

oh it matters alright. we’re concerned about your pedigree, crr6….and apparently so are you. Just keep talking like that and see how influential it is…. g’head.

ted c on February 1, 2011 at 12:00 AM

and it’s not proper because, well…he just thinks it goes too far.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:55 PM

like past those inconvenient lil’ constitutional bounds…such an annoyance they are…./

ted c on February 1, 2011 at 12:01 AM

like past those inconvenient lil’ constitutional bounds…such an annoyance they are…./

ted c on February 1, 2011 at 12:01 AM

Well he doesn’t really explain what those bounds are or why this law surpassed them under the NPC. That section of his opinion really is him just saying “look, I think this goes too far so I’m going to strike it down.”

Then there’s the fact that the entire Commerce clause section is premised on a distinction (activity/inactivity) which SCOTUS has never even mentioned. It’s a pretty weakly reasoned opinion, although I think it’s a slight improvement from Hudson’s.

crr6 on February 1, 2011 at 12:11 AM

txmomof6 on January 31, 2011 at 10:35 PM

Wow. Thanks for quoting the Judge! What a strong argument for our Constitutional Republic! Judge Vinson just wrote the brief and argument to go before the Supremes with.
What refreshing honor and incisive instruction. His decision reflects the genius of our Founders and our Founding Documents, which he understands like a champion!

tigerlily on February 1, 2011 at 12:48 AM

and it’s not proper because, well…he just thinks it goes too far.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:55 PM

and yet this is more than enough standard for your rebuttal….

Fighton03 on February 1, 2011 at 12:48 AM

This sitting judge with many years experience doesn’t know half as much about the law as me. I’m a law student!! I’m going to be a lawyer!!!

-crr6

Ampersand on February 1, 2011 at 12:50 AM

This sitting judge with many years experience doesn’t know half as much about the law as me. I’m a law student!! I’m going to be a lawyer!!!

-crr6

Ampersand on February 1, 2011 at 12:50 AM

Heh.

The judge? He certainly has more experience, but FWIW I go to a much better law school than Vandy, and I’ll be working for a much more prestigious firm than Beggs & Lane this summer. Not that it matters…but hey, you’re the one who brought up credentials.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:51 PM

a capella on February 1, 2011 at 1:08 AM

The judge? He certainly has more experience, but FWIW I go to a much better law school than Vandy, and I’ll be working for a much more prestigious firm than Beggs & Lane this summer. Not that it matters…but hey, you’re the one who brought up credentials.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:51 PM

I’m embarrassed for you. Please, stop.

Missy on February 1, 2011 at 1:11 AM

Well he doesn’t really explain what those bounds are or why this law surpassed them under the NPC. That section of his opinion really is him just saying “look, I think this goes too far so I’m going to strike it down.”…

crr6 on February 1, 2011 at 12:11 AM

Seriously? I thought he outlined his decision very well.

Course since I am not a lawyer or studying to become one your response is expected to be “you are not a lawyer so shut up in such matters, since you know nothing”.

Which I would counter with His thought process seamed logical to me. Re-read the decision and point out parts/sections that did not have some sort of historical backing.

F15Mech on February 1, 2011 at 1:18 AM

I really don’t think that’s correct. He admits the law is “necessary,” but then strikes it down because it’s not “proper,” and it’s not proper because, well…he just thinks it goes too far.

crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:55 PM

Just wondering have you ever taken a Constitutional Law course?

F15Mech on February 1, 2011 at 1:22 AM

The judge? He certainly has more experience, but FWIW I go to a
much better law school than Vandy, and I ’ll be working for a much
more prestigious firm than Beggs & Lane this summer. Not that it
matters …but hey, you’re the one who brought up credentials.
crr6 on January 31, 2011 at 11:51 PM

So the fact that daddy had a lot of money to send you to a nice law school means you’re qualified to criticize his opinion? He has 40 years of experience, you delusional moron.

spinach.chin on February 1, 2011 at 1:22 AM

Just wondering have you ever taken a Constitutional Law course?

F15Mech on February 1, 2011 at 1:22 AM

If she was in Obama’s class it wouldn’t have helped her.

pedestrian on February 1, 2011 at 1:25 AM

Just wondering have you ever taken a Constitutional Law course?

F15Mech on February 1, 2011 at 1:22 AM

Haha, yes of course. And I worked for a federal judge last summer.

So the fact that daddy had a lot of money to send you to a nice law school means you’re qualified to criticize his opinion?
spinach.chin on February 1, 2011 at 1:22 AM

Daddy did not send me to a nice law school, nor is he paying for law school.

He has 40 years of experience, you delusional moron.

spinach.chin on February 1, 2011 at 1:22 AM

I acknowledged that. It doesn’t make him right.

crr6 on February 1, 2011 at 1:27 AM

I acknowledged that. It doesn’t make him right.

crr6 on February 1, 2011 at 1:27 AM

nor does your lack of experience and liberal bias make your right…

(just trying to get the last word because it so make crr6 upset)

Ampersand on February 1, 2011 at 1:33 AM

Just wondering have you ever taken a Constitutional Law course?

F15Mech on February 1, 2011 at 1:22 AM

If she was in Obama’s class it wouldn’t have helped her.

pedestrian on February 1, 2011 at 1:25 AM

I don’t believe the Bamster ever taught Constitutional law. His handlers have tried to pass him off as a professor of constitutional law, but he was certainly not a professor or anything close, and the only courses we are aware of that he taught at Chicago Law were on Alinsky.

I believe it is more accurate to say that he was ‘a visiting lecturer teaching community organizing’.

slickwillie2001 on February 1, 2011 at 1:34 AM

Obama says founding fathers behaved stupidly.

Murphy9 on February 1, 2011 at 1:37 AM

I acknowledged that. It doesn’t make him right.
crr6 on February 1, 2011 at 1:27 AM

You’re a self-absorbed idiot.

spinach.chin on February 1, 2011 at 1:40 AM

You’re a self-absorbed idiot.

spinach.chin on February 1, 2011 at 1:40 AM

Aw, that’s not nice.

crr6 on February 1, 2011 at 1:42 AM

(just trying to get the last word because it so make crr6 upset)

Ampersand on February 1, 2011 at 1:33 AM

Aw, that’s not nice.

crr6 on February 1, 2011 at 1:42 AM

lllllllllllllllllast word!!!!!!!!!!!

Ampersand on February 1, 2011 at 1:49 AM

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