by Doug Book, staff writer
In Tuesday’s oral arguments before the Supreme Court, Solicitor General and chief ObamaCare advocate Donald Verrilli was presented with a substantial portion of his own posterior by Justice Antonin Scalia.
The summary execution began when Verrilli made the extraordinary mistake of schooling the Court on the proper meaning of its own decisions.
“No it didn’t,” said Scalia to the stunned Solicitor General in reference to his errant references to the significance of previous cases.
And what followed was a merciless barrage of facts exposing the overreach of the individual mandate, ObamaCare’s method of creating “fairness in healthcare” by making those who do not want to purchase insurance buy it anyway or suffer a penalty.
When US District Judge Roger Vinson found ObamaCare unconstitutional in 2011 he wrote simply “If Congress can penalize a passive individual for failing to engage in commerce…it would be ‘difficult to perceive any limitation on federal power,’ and we would have a Constitution in name only.” (1)
And Scalia not only repeated Vinson’s skepticism of Congress’ immediate use of the commerce clause power, he drove directly to the heart of Verrilli’s contention that the federal government has the absolute authority to impose the individual mandate because it is “necessary and proper” to the success of ObamaCare itself.
“In addition to being necessary, it has to be proper,” said Scalia of the federal government’s unprecedented decision to force unwilling participants into the insurance market and fine those who refuse. (2)
And the judge continued, saying although ObamaCare’s individual mandate might be “necessary” to the success of the Regime’s healthcare scheme as a whole, “…it’s not proper because it violates an equally evident principle in the Constitution, which is that the Federal Government is not supposed to be a government that has all powers; that it’s supposed to be a government of limited powers.” (2)
And Scalia was not finished with his Constitutional education of Barack Obama’s handpicked, ObamaCare mouthpiece. “[The] Federal Government is a government of enumerated powers and the vast majority…remain in the States and do not belong to the Federal Government,” said the justice.
In response, all Verrilli could do was raise the same “it’s Constitutional under the commerce clause powers of Congress” argument with which he began the days’ proceedings.
“The Tenth Amendment says the powers not given to the Federal Government are reserved, not just to the States, but to the States and the people,” said Scalia when Varrilli appeared to claim the powers of the Federal Government should take precedence over the rights of the American people. (2)
Leftist media pundits blame Verrilli’s questionable performance Tuesday on a lack of being properly prepared. They don’t seem to understand that arguing in favor of a thoroughly unconstitutional law is not an easy thing to do, especially when the audience can neither be handpicked, nor the questions pre-approved.
Unless Scalia undergoes a major change of heart, he–along with Alito and Thomas—will make the 3rd Justice very likely to find ObamaCare unconstitutional.
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