When asked what constitutional authority gave the government the right to mandate citizens to buy health insurance, Nancy Pelosi contemptuously replied ” Are you serious?”
Yes Nancy we are and so are judges who take the constitution more seriously than you.
The administration used the Commerce Clause to justify its control grab, but that has failed. Then they used the Necessary and Proper Clause, but that was rejected as well. In the Wall Street Journal Online law professors Randy Barnett and Elizabeth Foley explains Judge Vinson‘s Ruling in The Nuts and Bolts of the ObamaCare Ruling.
Recognizing the vulnerability of relying on the Commerce Clause alone, the Obama administration in the Florida case shifted its emphasis to the Necessary and Proper Clause of the Constitution. That clause empowers Congress to enact “all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution” its enumerated powers. As the Supreme Court has repeatedly explained, the Necessary and Proper Clause does not expand the scope of Congress’s enumerated powers. Instead, it gives Congress the ability to select among various means of exercising them—for example, the enumerated power to “establish post offices” necessarily and properly includes a power to print stamps.
This novel use of the Necessary and Proper Clause, if allowed to stand, would fundamentally transform our constitutional scheme from limited to unlimited federal power, narrowing the scope of individual liberty. In Judge Vinson’s words, “the more harm the statute does, the more power Congress could assume for itself under the Necessary and Proper Clause. 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.”
Besides being ridiculously complicated, poorly understood, the most partisan major legislation ever passed, and lubricated with bribes and lies, this bill has trouble passing even basic constitutional muster. For some the Constitution is just an impediment to central control and power that must be overcome; for others the Constitution is an impediment to central control and power that must be respected.