Health Care Reform In the Supreme Court
Today starts the first day of the debate on health care reform. It will be very interesting to see how the supreme court rules in the next 3 days.
Fox News reported on what a fine line the administration’s argument is on. Not having health insurance cause to get a penalty or a tax? The administration’s attorney had a difficult time distinguishing either or.
Supreme Court Health Care Law Here is the transcript of day 1.
In day 2 there was emphasis from the justices on three significant constitutional areas to determine if the ACA is lawful. The Commerce Clause, the Necessary and Proper Clause and the federal government’s taxing power.
The government made the case that the law was “classic economic regulation of economic conduct” That all people at some point must purchase or use health care. The government also pointed out economic problems of sustaining the current system.
The plaintiffs were more focused on the individual level and if Congress can regulate activity or in this case inactivity. They argued the Federal government does not have the constitutional authority to force people into a marketplace by making them buy a product. This line of argument about unchecked authority gives concern that the Government could mandate the purchase of any product they want.
The 3rd day of arguments was what to do if the individual mandate was deemed unconstitutional. Since the individual mandate is the key component of the ACA without it could bankrupt every health insurance company. The justices ask many questions and the Government stated that without the individual mandate guaranteed issue would have to be removed from the law. The plaintiffs said that entire law should be struck down. The supreme court could not go through the entire law and decide was stays and what goes. This would be a form of judicial activism and the court really does not want to go through 2,000+ pages of the law. They even called it cruel and unusual punishment if they had to do that.
It is being predicted that in June of 2012 the supreme court will decide the fate of the health care reform passed by the Obama administration.