Obamacare: Individual Purchase Mandate “Exceeds the Commerce Clause powers vested in Congress under Article I [of the Constitution]”
Monday, December 13, 2010
Wesley J. Smith
As promised, I have read Judge Henry E. Hudson’s 42-page ruling invalidating the individual purchase mandate of Obamacare. In a nutshell, Judge Hudson ruled:
•That the individual purchase mandate (“Minimum Essential Coverage Provision”) is an unprecedented stretch of government power, in his words, it “extends the Commerce Clause powers beyond its current high water mark.”
•Further, that the justification must come from Congress’s enumerated Commerce Clause power to regulate economic activities.
•But the law exceeds the enumerated powers of the Commerce Clause.
•The Congress’s efforts to bootstrap authority with findings and conclusions do not, in effect, amend the constitution (my words) to increase governmental power in this sphere.
•The fines for not purchasing insurance are a penalty and not a tax, and the general power of the government to tax is not applicable to the IPM.
•The individual purchase mandate is therefore, unconstitutional.
•The unconstitutional part of the law will be severed from the rest, so that Obamacare remains in effect.
•No injunction against Obamacare was issued because the unconstitutional part of the law does not take effect until 2014.