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Posted by on Mar 28, 2010 in Economy, Guest Contributor, Health, Politics | 18 comments

The Fight Against Obamacare Continues (Guest Voice)

The Fight Against ObamaCare Continues
by Floyd and Mary Beth Brown

With benefits as notorious as Viagra for pedophiles and rapists, we watched in horror as the American way of life was fundamentally changed by Democratic members of the House of Representatives and Senate. Obama and Pelosi twisted arms and bribed members of Congress into supporting their massive new entitlement program. A feeling of defeat and despair began to creep in as ObamaCare became the law. At their huge celebration party at the White House, in words unfitting a vice-president, Joe Biden exuberantly proclaimed, “This is a big F***ing deal.”

Repeal is a laudable goal we should work towards, but the political reality dictates that is highly improbable. Even Ronald Reagan was unable to repeal the Department of Education that he had pledged to abolish. Once a new government entitlement and layers of bureaucracy are created, it is nearly impossible to roll back.

But don’t give up now. While prospects are bleak, there is reason for hope.

The attorneys general of 14 different states have signed onto a lawsuit challenging certain portions of ObamaCare as being unconstitutional. While these lawsuits will not repeal the whole law, they will eliminate the most egregious portions of the bill.

It is comforting to know that at least 14 elected representatives take their oaths of office seriously and are willing to stand up to preserve and defend the Constitution.

The lawsuit asserts a few major breaches of constitutional limitations by the federal government. The first is that under the enumerated powers of the Constitution, the federal government has no authority to require its citizens to purchase a product. Some liberals might claim that the government already requires you to purchase auto insurance. This comparison is faulty for two reasons: first of all, driving a car is a privilege, not a requirement. A citizen may choose not to drive a car and, therefore, not have insurance. The second reason this comparison falls flat is that auto insurance mandates are not passed by the federal government, but by the states. Our Constitution enshrines an oft-maligned principle known as federalism.

The lawsuit states, “The Constitution nowhere authorizes the United States to mandate, either directly or under threat of penalty, that all citizens and legal residents have qualifying healthcare coverage. By imposing such a mandate, the Act exceeds the powers of the United States under Article I of the Constitution and violates the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution.”

The second unconstitutional provision of ObamaCare is the tax penalty required under the act. This tax that must be paid by uninsured citizens is a capitation, or a direct tax, which is prohibited by Article 1, sections 2 and 9 of the Constitution.

The third reason the act is unconstitutional is that it mandates that states add people to their Medicaid rolls, and forces the states to pay the costs out-of-pocket. Florida estimates they will see a 50 percent increase in Medicaid enrollment. This unfunded mandate is clearly unconstitutional.

The new act changes the dynamic of Medicaid from a state-federal partnership, to a top-down federal program where the discretion of the states is removed.

The only response from Obama’s administration has been from Nancy-Ann DeParle, director of the White House Office of Health Reform. She said the president isn’t “concerned” about the potential legal challenges. Congress has the “inherent authority” to mandate coverage under the commerce clause that allows the federal government to regulate interstate commerce, she told Bloomberg Television.

While the success of this lawsuit may seem unlikely, this is not the first time an ambitious president has run afoul of the Constitution. The Supreme Court overturned some of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s more radical and unconstitutional schemes during the Great Depression. This led to his attempts to pack the Supreme Court.

Our hope is that the Supreme Court will defend the Constitution. They will hear the joint case from these courageous attorneys general, or one of the cases forthcoming from private citizens, and fulfill the proper role of interpreting the U.S. Constitution.

If the courts will not stand and uphold the Constitution, who will?

©2010 Floyd and Mary Beth Brown. This column is licensed to run on TMV in full.

  • shannonlee

    These two are crazy people. Why are they given a soapbox here at TMV?

    I took the time to post their background the last time I saw them here….they are the craziest of the crazies.

    • Leonidas

      These two are crazy people. Why are they given a soapbox here at TMV?

      But with 50% less hyperbole than many of the more recent threads LOL. No big imflamatory Partisan headline, a more calm discussion (agree or disagree with it). Give me more craziness like this and less angry redfaced hyperbole spewing “sane people”

      In short, Ad hominems don’t persuade me, take them to task for the points in their post you disagree with instead.

      • shannonlee

        I did that the last time their junk was posted here…and then I listed their background and all of the fun stuff I found after following a chain of links.

        I won’t waste my time reading their waste…just want to put out the warning.

      • TheIndependentCuss


        I agree with you.

        While I do not concur with the majority “conservative” Republicans’ head-in-the-sand “No reform needed here!” mentality, I certainly respect Cagle Cartoons’s privilege (if not right) to post the Brown’s opinions here. I find nothing whatsoever to be offensive about this column’s presentations. I simply fail to agree with the totality of their conclusions.

        However, I DO agree wholeheartedly with the first point which they make: legally compelling citizens to buy a product from a private corporation is a very dangerous precedent and is not acceptable in a free society.

        Of course, I feel the same way about being forced to pay Social Security to the government. Wherever problems are in need of a solution, it is wise to commit a society neither to Fascism nor to Socialism, much less to both at once as we have done, but rather to seek a far more modest approach.

        One more thing: is anyone else familiar with Cagle Cartoons? I see them frequently in local newspapers and online — and they are not exclusively conservative by a long shot. So kudos to them for publishing a column which I doubt reflects the majority opinion of their syndicate.

        Okay, everybody, now pile on with your rhetoric — but please remember that the title of this blog IS “The Moderate Voice”.

        Jeff Dreibus

        • Just something interesting on this topic. In 1792 the government passed the Militia Act, which compelled all male citizens to register for the militia, and was meant to establish a uniform militia with regard to equipment.

          The act mandated that every militia member (every male citizen) purchase a very specific list of military equipment, such as a rifle, a kit, and so forth. They were not reimbursed for this.

          Yes, in 1792, the U.S. government set the precedent of forcing it’s citizens to buy a product from the private market. I guess we’ve been fascists for a long time now.

  • Schadenfreude_lives

    Why are Conservatives against universal health care? Because the only thing funnier than poor people is sick poor people. ht:IMAO

  • tidbits

    The constitutional challenges are correctly recited. The hopes of success are exaggerated. But, I just love it when folks take the view that the Supreme Court is only “upholding the Constitution” if they interpret it the way those people want it to be interpreted.

    • Axel Edgren

      If Godwin and Un-American had a baby, they would name it Unconstitutional.

      • TheMagicalSkyFather

        Another Axel classic!!

      • Leonidas

        If Godwin and Un-American had a baby, they would name it Unconstitutional.

        Or Alan Grayson. He has been showing some Paternal Lover for daddy Godwin lately.

      • tidbits

        One “Like” for humor, Axel.

    • DLS

      Well, we did get the introduction of modern liberal judicial activism after the initial, most ambitious part of the New Deal was struck down. But,

      “Our hope is that the Supreme Court will defend the Constitution.”

      I’ve argued elsewhere (using real arguments, not the General Welfare clause, the “necessary and proper” clause, the Interstate Commerce clause, or more laughably, the Premable) that there may be a legitimate federal power in application here, as well as precedents set already.

      Plus, that Chicago gun control case’s scope isn’t necessarily limited to gun control.

      • tidbits


        Appreciating your thoughts on the Chicago gun case, don’t get your hopes up. Scalia already said from the bench that he is ready to use substantive due process, the basis of liberal activist cases of the 60’s-70’s, to knock down the gun ban. He would not have gone there unless he saw no other way to hold a majority. Federalism will have to wait for another day.

        • DLS

          “Scalia already said from the bench that he is ready to use substantive due process […]

          Federalism will have to wait for another day.”

          There’s also the precedent of federal drug law to think about.

          If you’re shown to be right, this is regrettable. 

          I still await the ruling with interest, though, and I’d like to see what scope it has (limited to gun control or not).

  • HemmD

    “The constitutional challenges are correctly recited. The hopes of success are exaggerated. But, I just love it when folks take the view that the Supreme Court is only “upholding the Constitution” if they interpret it the way those people want it to be interpreted.”

    I would just say thar these “challenges” have been addressed through other programs such as SS Medicare, etc.

    That being said, no one knows just what the chuckle heads in SCOTUS will decide. Stare decisis has been clothing optional with the boys on the Right for some time.

    • tidbits


      Repeating something I said the other day, those who want HCR to survive should be hoping Obama gets to replace one or two of the Supreme Court conservatives before this case reaches them. They are friendlier to the Tenth Amendment than generations of courts before have been, though I still think getting HCR overturned, in whole or in any significant part, is a long shot.

  • DLS

    It’s funny that there may be some overreaction to what started this thread — is it because it professes fidelity to the Constitution, something that is politically incorrect? [chuckle]

  • Ytterbius

    I thought this was from the onion for a moment. What a joke, not to be taken seriously.

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