The Supreme Court ObamaCare ruling is the topic at a Federalist Society forum on October 4 at Florida International University College of Law. David Rivkin, who led the 26-state case against the US government, and Prof. Elizabeth Foley will present.
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PRLog (Press Release) – Oct 01, 2012 –
The issue of government takeover of healthcare isn’t going away. While Chief Justice John Roberts’ opinion on the legality of ObamaCare put limits on Congress’ power to regulate citizens’ activity, it gutted limitations on Congress’ taxing power.
David Rivkin, who led the 26-state case against the U.S. government in Florida’s 11th District Court (whose judge, Roger Vinson, ruled in the plaintiffs’ favor), said that the Supreme Court decision in June was both “excellent and bad.” The Supreme Court ObamaCare ruling is the discussion topic on Thursday, October 4, at Florida International University College of Law.Prof. Elizabeth Foley, a “founding faculty” of the FIU College of Law, will serve as commentator for the event.
Over the past decades, Congress has enacted legislation that increasingly broadened its regulatory powers, assuming that any regulation is justified by the Constitution’s Commerce Clause. The Supreme Court decision established limits on Congress’ power to do so. For those interpreting the Constitution as limiting and enumerating the powers of government, this aspect of the ruling was good news.
Unfortunately, according to Rivkin, the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold ObamaCare required that they effectively rewrite the law and broaden Congress’ tax authority. They converted the individual mandate into a tax for not purchasing insurance. Rivkin asserted that this expansion of the taxing power enables Congress to tax inactivity—crossing a constitutional barrier into police powers.
Rivkin has observed that the Supreme Court adheres to the principles of federalism, i.e., the dual sovereignty of the federal government and the states, only when ruling on laws that are not important—a position commonly known as “fig leaf federalism.”