A federal judge in Florida dealt President Obama's healthcare overhaul another blow Monday, ruling the law unconstitutional because of its requirement that Americans have health insurance starting in 2014.
U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson's closely watched decision delivered the most sweeping blow to the landmark law since Obama signed it last March. Vinson declined to suspend the law but said the government should abide by his ruling, potentially complicating implementation in some states.
That is from Noam N. Levey and David G. Savage's "Federal judge declares healthcare law unconstitutional" (Los Angeles Times) and well they should. I won't pretend to know all the ins and outs of the law because I don't.
But I do know that, in my lifetime, the federal government has never been allowed to tell me I must buy something. I don't see where they have that right and I would hope that the courts would agree with this decision.
If the federal government wants to provide insurance to all Americans (which they should), that's great. But there is a world of difference between providing citizens with something and forcing them to buy a product.
This is from Warren Richey's "White House vows to implement health care reform, despite judge's ruling" (Christian Science Monitor):
The comments came in reaction to a 78-page decision released Monday by US District Judge Roger Vinson in Pensacola, Fla. The judge ruled that Congress exceeded its power under the Constitution’s commerce clause when it required all Americans to purchase health insurance as part of the president’s health-care reform law.
The judge also declared the entire law must be struck down, because Congress eliminated a provision that would have allowed a judge to invalidate only part of the law while preserving the rest of it.
Judge Vinson is the second federal judge to declare a key portion of the Obama health-care reform law unconstitutional. Two other federal judges have upheld the constitutionality of the law.
I was and am opposed to the mandate and the lies of the White House that it will hold down costs are lies. I live in the only state in the country that already had ObamaCare. We called it RomneyCare and we are stuck with it. Prices haven't gone down at all. Now when the Republican governor of California (Arnold) was trying to follow Romney's lead, we saw strong pushback from the left on this mandate. Many programs on KPFA and KPFK were appalled by the mandate. Nurses and activists spoke out against it. But then Barack proposes it and so many on the left go silent. Or they do like Ralph Nader and dispute it for one column and then do three or four defending it. If you're wondering why I'm not highlighting Ralph Nader these days is I'm just not impressed with his Hokey Pokey style of criticism these days.
This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for Monday: