Per ThinkProgress, here’s Ronald Reagan’s Solicitor General, Charles Fried, completely refuting everything Ken Cuccinelli has been saying about the “individual mandate” (which, I’ll remind everyone for the gazillionth time, was originally a REPUBLICAN idea):
I think there are lots of problems with [the health care reform bill]…but I am quite sure that the health care mandate is constitutional...the healthcare mandate really is — I would have said a “no brainer,” but I mustn’t, with such intelligent brains going the other way.
Clearly, insurance is commerce. That was held by the Supreme Court in 1944…it has been ever since…the Congress and the courts obviously think insurance is commerce. And health care insurance surely is commerce, insuring as it does something like 18% of the gross national product.
Now, if that’s so, if health care insurance is commerce, then does Congress have the right to regulate health care insurance? Of course it does. And my authorities are not recent, they go back to John Marshall, who sat in the Virginia legislature at the time they ratified the constitution, and who in 1824, in Gibbons v. Ogden, said regarding Congress’ commerce power, “What is this power? It is the power to regulate, that is to prescribe the rule whereby commerce is governed.” To my mind, that is the end of the story, the constitutional basis for the mandate.
And as they say in court, “case closed!” 🙂
UPDATE: In health insurance-related news, see the “flip” for video showing how Republican Congressmen are giving their staff taxpayer-funded healthcare. Does that mean they’re all socialists? Sure seems that way, based on their own (il)logic. LOL