CNN originally reported that the Supreme Court found that the individual mandate is not a valid exercise of the commerce clause and that it appeared as if the Supreme Court had struck down the individual mandate. Then CNN followed up by saying that the court actually did uphold it under the taxing clause, with a narrow reading of the U.S. Constitution. People are calling this a screw-up.
Both reports were correct.
Five to Four, the Supreme Court has said that although the individual mandate (that everyone must obtain health care coverage) does not stand via the commerce clause, in essence it stands via the provision in the U.S. Constitution for Congress to tax the American people. This is because people who do not obtain coverage will have a fine “taxed” onto their yearly income taxes, via the IRS 1040 income tax form and/or another form.
Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution states that Congress is allowed to “lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States.”
The Supreme Court is not saying that the health care law in and of itself is constitutional, as per Article 1 Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution. But instead, it is saying that taxing people who don’t have coverage is constitutional under this section because it is viewed as “Providing for the general welfare of the United States.” By saying this, they are not saying “general welfare,” as in our personal health care welfare. it is saying that the taxation is needed for the “general welfare,” as in the fiscal welfare of the United States (the money.)
In other words, the court is saying that if Congress feels that the fiscal (monetary) welfare of this nation is harmed by people who do not obtain health care coverage, that it is in the best interest of this “general welfare” of the United States to tax such people in order to make up some of the revenue that is lost each year by uncovered hospital visits, doctor visits, etc. This is because otherwise, the cost largely goes to taxpayers and people who do pay for health care coverage, which hurts the overall economy.
What was exposed:
Basically, the Supreme Court has said Obama’s health care act’s core reason for being is in fact to place a tax on people who already cannot afford health care coverage.
Obama had sworn he would not put any new taxes on anyone earning under $250,000.00 a year. Many of us were fully aware that he was lying, as were many of us fully aware that Obama’s health care act was simply a back door to taxing of the poor and an increase in the overall cost of health coverage on most everyone else. This is, of course, excluding Congress and presidents, who are all excluded from the act.
Then there is the fact that this is all just a step to the liberals in Congress working our nation towards the single-payer system that will eventually make the government the financial middleman in charge of all of that money. And remember that this health care act puts the health care of the average American citizen into the hands of the politicians as a campaign bargaining chip for each and every election season.
What went wrong:
Where the challengers of the law messed up was in failing to challenge the health care law in its entirety, instead of challenging parts of it. The main reason the law is unconstitutional was totally missed.
If someone broke into your home, would you stand there arguing with him as to what is okay for him to take and what is not? Of course you wouldn’t. And yet that is what has happened with the health care law. People argued some things in the law instead of the fact that the law is there to begin with and shouldn’t be.
There is no power given to Congress that allows them to take over the privately-owned health insurance industry and turn it into a government-run health care system. The health care law is basically saying that there is no longer any such thing as health insurance. ObamaCare is a health “care” act, not a health “insurance” act. Hence the reason that no one can be turned down. It is not insurance. Insurance insures us in case something happens, not after it happens. We don’t get house insurance after our kitchen burns down, after all.
It is now health care, a government-run entity, in which everyone has to put into the pot. It is the government’s takeover of an industry, the dissolving of it, and the forcing of those who were in that industry to now work for a government-run entity or to find another source of income. It is like this: You own a clothing store. The government says that you can no longer run it as a store; you now must run it as a place where people can come and just get whatever it is that they need to wear within the government’s standards; and everyone who gets their clothing from you must pay a yearly amount to you that does not go over a government-set amount of cost to them. You no longer own a store. You now work for the government in a government-run clothing distribution place. And you are no longer allowed to own and operate a true store again. You are not allowed to make a profit above what the government allows you to have. The government’s claim is that it has a right to regulate what you do for the good of this country, because everyone needs clothes.
Debra J.M. Smith 06-28-12
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