Chief Justice John Roberts was initially ready to strike down the Obama health plan but ultimately decided to find a way to declare it constitutional. That’s the assessment of Galen Institute President Grace-Marie Turner, who has been on the front lines in the battle against government intervention in health care since before the Clinton-era health debate in the 1990s. Turner says other critics have good points that the Roberts decision contains aspects that could make repeal easier and she says that means voters will have the final say on Obamacare in November. Turner expects this to be a huge issue, perhaps even eclipsing the economy. She also calls the ruling ‘corrosive to job creation’ since business owners refuse to make long term plans to expand or add workers until they know how much this plan will cost them. Turner says she is not worried that Mitt Romney could turn out to be weak on this issue despite his record back in Massachusetts. She says Romney has no choice but to follow through on the promises he’s making right now.
Archives for June 2012
John Gizzi of Human Events offers his assessment of the landmark Supreme Court rulings on the Obama health care law and the Arizona immigration law. He also says Thursday’s contempt of Congress citation will lead to the ouster of Attorney General Eric Holder by the beginning of November. On the political side, Gizzi explains why Orrin Hatch easily won the GOP nomination for a seventh term in Utah just two years after the party soundly fired Sen. Robert Bennett.
On Thursday, the highly anticipated Supreme Court ruling on the Obama health plan was delivered and by a 5-4 margin the court ruled the plan was constitutional under the taxing power of Congress. The Capitol Steps offered a health care reform plan of their own that was patterned after the popular ‘Cash for Clunkers’ program. It’s called ‘Cash for Codgers’. Our guest is Steps writer and performer Mark Eaton.
Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review are encouraged by Mitt Romney’s firm stand to repeal Obamacare and by Romney’s fundraising haul after the Obamacare decision. They also acknowledge some silver linings in the decision but encourage fellow conservatives to face the reality that this was a devastating loss and a very poor ruling. And they’re disgusted by President Obama’s vulgar tweet to gloat over the ruling.
In 2010, Virginia moved to pre-empt the individual mandate from affecting consumers by passing a law protecting its residents form the penalty for not purchasing health insurance. After the Obama health plan was passed, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli filed suit in defense of his state’s new law. That suit was eventually tossed out of federal court, and on Thursday the mandate itself was declared constitutional based on the power of Congress to levy taxes. Cuccinelli strongly disagrees with the verdict on the mandate and even called Thursday “a dark day for liberty”. But after further review, he sees a number of positives from the majority opinion from Chief Justice John Roberts. Cuccinelli says it is very significant that the court found the mandate unconstitutional on grounds of the Constitution’s Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause. He calls those rulings the greatest judicial constraint of federal power since the New Deal in the 1930s. Cuccinelli is also very pleased that states will not be forced to be part of the Medicaid expansion that the Obama administration plans to use to fund the expanded health coverage. Overall, Cuccinelli gives Thursday’s ruling a ‘B-‘, saying the limitations on federal power are strong but the mandate ruling brings the overall grade lower.
Indiana Rep. Larry Bucshon intently watched Thursday’s Supreme Court ruling on the Obama health plan, both as a member of Congress and as a longtime cardiothoracic surgeon. Rep. Bucshon says he is deeply disappointed that the individual mandate was upheld but he is more concerned about that the plan will do to the quality of health care in the nation. Bucshon is mildly encouraged that the Supreme Court also allowed states to refuse being part of the Medicaid expansion used to extend coverage. Bucshon says more people on Medicaid will mean more people not getting to see doctors because the reimbursement rate is so low. He says previously uninsured people may now have a card in their pocket but many of them will still need to head to the emergency room for care. He says November will be key to potentially electing a president and Congress that will dismantle much of the Obama plan.
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul strongly disagrees with Thursday’s Supreme Court decision that upholds most of the Obama health care law. But the man who closely identified himself with the Tea Party movement says this ruling will create a resurgence among the grassroots movement that will carry on through the November elections. Paul says this will be a huge campaign issue and Mitt Romney will have options to roll back the plan – either with a cooperative Congress or through executive orders. But Paul warns that if Obama is re-elected we will be headed down a troubling path toward health care rationing, long lines and worse. he also fears Obama is preparing to go after domestic energy the way he did after the private insurance industry.
Chief Justice John Roberts provided the key vote in upholding the constitutionality of the Obama health care plan. In his opinion, Roberts wrote that the law is unconstitutional with respect to the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause of the Constitution. However, he says it is constitutional under the power of Congress to tax. That did not impress California Rep. Dan Lungren, who is also the former attorney general of the Golden State. Lungren says Roberts was “stretching” to find the plan constitutional. In the process, the congressman says Roberts gave Congress much greater power through taxation. Lungren expects the health care issue to once again become a major election issue.
Greg Corombos of Radio America and Jim Geraghty of National Review forget the martinis and order much stronger drinks as the Supreme Court upholds the individual mandate and nearly all of Obamacare by using an unlikely rationale by the an unlikely justice. Greg and Jim discuss other aspects of the decision and what it could mean for the 2012 campaign.
Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar is a member of the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee. He voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for refusing to cooperate with the committee’s investigation into the gun walking program called ‘Fast & Furious’. Gosar says Obama administration assertions that all ‘relevant’ documents have been turned over to the committee are an ‘outright lie’. He explains what convinced him that now was the time to take this action regarding Holder. He also says he is looking forward to the Justice Department investigation of the attorney general. Rep. Gosar also expresses his frustrations with the Department of Homeland Security for cutting off many cooperative efforts with Arizona officials on immigration enforcement following Monday’s Supreme Court decision. He says the federal government is ‘playing favorites’ and such action is an ‘atrocity’. Gosar says playing political games with border security is an affront to Americans nationwide.