I'm posting these Opinion Editorial here - completely unedited - because I believe the Charles Krauthammer and George Will are both very knowledgeable individuals who have shown great wisdom and foresight.
He writes a weekly political column that runs on Fridays in The Washington Post. He is also a Fox News commentator, appearing nightly on “Special Report with Bret Baier,” and a panelist on “Inside Washington.”
As a result of the Supreme Court upholding ObamaCare, Charles Krauthammer wrote this today:
Why Roberts did it
by Charles Krauthammer
It’s the judiciary’s Nixon-to-China: Chief Justice John Roberts joins the liberal wing of the Supreme Court and upholds the constitutionality of ObamaCare.
How? By pulling off one of the great constitutional finesses of all time. He managed to uphold the central conservative argument against ObamaCare, while at the same time finding a narrow definitional dodge to uphold the law — and thus prevented the court from being seen as having overturned, presumably on political grounds, the signature legislation of this administration.
Why did he do it? Because he carries two identities. Jurisprudentially, he is a constitutional conservative. Institutionally, he is chief justice and sees himself as uniquely entrusted with the custodianship of the court’s legitimacy, reputation and stature.
As a conservative, he is as appalled as his conservative colleagues by the administration’s central argument that Obamacare’s individual mandate is a proper exercise of its authority to regulate commerce.
That makes congressional power effectively unlimited. Mr. Jones is not a purchaser of health insurance. Mr. Jones has therefore manifestly not entered into any commerce.
Yet Congress tells him he must buy health insurance — on the grounds that it is regulating commerce. If government can do that under the commerce clause, what can it not do?
“The Framers . . . gave Congress the power to regulate commerce, not to compel it,” writes Roberts. Otherwise you “undermine the principle that the Federal Government is a government of limited and enumerated powers.”
That’s Roberts, philosophical conservative. But he lives in uneasy coexistence with Roberts, custodian of the court, acutely aware that the judiciary’s arrogation of power has eroded the esteem in which it was once held.
Most of this arrogation occurred under the liberal Warren and Burger courts, most egregiously with Roe v. Wade, which willfully struck down the duly passed abortion laws of 46 states.
The result has been four decades of popular protest and resistance to an act of judicial arrogance that, as Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg once said, “deferred stable settlement of the issue” by the normal electoral/legislative process.
More recently, however, few decisions have occasioned more bitterness and rancor than Bush v. Gore, a 5 to 4 decision split along ideological lines.
It was seen by many (principally, of course, on the left) as a political act disguised as jurisprudence and designed to alter the course of the single most consequential political act of a democracy — the election of a president.
Whatever one thinks of the substance of Bush v. Gore, it did affect the reputation of the court. Roberts seems determined that there be no recurrence with ObamaCare. Hence his straining in his ObamaCare ruling to avoid a similar result — a 5 to 4 decision split along ideological lines that might be perceived as partisan and political.
National health care has been a liberal dream for a hundred years. It is clearly the most significant piece of social legislation in decades. Roberts’s concern was that the court do everything it could to avoid being seen, rightly or wrongly, as high-handedly overturning sweeping legislation passed by both houses of Congress and signed by the president.
How to reconcile the two imperatives — one philosophical and the other institutional? Assign yourself the task of writing the majority opinion.
Find the ultimate finesse that manages to uphold the law, but only on the most narrow of grounds — interpreting the individual mandate as merely a tax, something generally within the power of Congress.
Result? The law stands, thus obviating any charge that a partisan court overturned duly passed legislation. And yet at the same time the commerce clause is reined in.
By denying that it could justify the imposition of an individual mandate, Roberts draws the line against the inexorable decades-old expansion of congressional power under the commerce clause fig leaf.
Law upheld, Supreme Court’s reputation for neutrality maintained. Commerce clause contained, constitutional principle of enumerated powers reaffirmed.
That’s not how I would have ruled. I think the “mandate is merely a tax” argument is a dodge, and a flimsy one at that. (The “tax” is obviously punitive, regulatory and intended to compel.)
Perhaps that’s not how Roberts would have ruled had he been just an associate justice and not the chief. But that’s how he did rule.
ObamaCare is now essentially upheld. There’s only one way it can be overturned. The same way it was passed — elect a new president and a new Congress.
That’s undoubtedly what Roberts is saying: Your job, not mine. I won’t make it easy for you.
George F. Will
He is a Conservative pundit who writes a twice-weekly column on politics and domestic affairs. He began his column with The Post in 1974, and he received the Pulitzer Prize for Commentary in 1977. He is also an ABC News commentator and regular panelist on "This Week."
As a result of the Supreme Court upholding ObamaCare, George Will wrote this today:
Conservatives’ consolation prize
by George F. Will
Conservatives won a substantial victory Thursday. The physics of American politics — actions provoking reactions — continues to move the crucial debate, about the nature of the American regime, toward conservatism. Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. has served this cause.
The health-care legislation’s expansion of the federal government’s purview has improved our civic health by rekindling interest in what this expansion threatens — the Framers’ design for limited government.
Conservatives distraught about the survival of the individual mandate are missing the considerable consolation prize they won when the Supreme Court rejected a constitutional rationale for the mandate — Congress’s rationale — that was pregnant with rampant statism.
The case challenged the court to fashion a judicially administrable principle that limits Congress’s power to act on the mere pretense of regulating interstate commerce. At least Roberts got the court to embrace emphatic language rejecting the Commerce Clause rationale for penalizing the inactivity of not buying insurance:
“The power to regulate commerce presupposes the existence of commercial activity to be regulated. . . . The individual mandate, however, does not regulate existing commercial activity. It instead compels individuals to become active in commerce by purchasing a product, on the ground that their failure to do so affects interstate commerce.
Construing the Commerce Clause to permit Congress to regulate individuals precisely because they are doing nothing would open a new and potentially vast domain to congressional authority. . . . Allowing Congress to justify federal regulation by pointing to the effect of inaction on commerce would bring countless decisions an individual could potentially make within the scope of federal regulation, and — under the government’s theory — empower Congress to make those decisions for him.”
If the mandate had been upheld under the Commerce Clause, the Supreme Court would have decisively construed this clause so permissively as to give Congress an essentially unlimited police power — the power to mandate, proscribe and regulate behavior for whatever Congress deems a public benefit.
Instead, the court rejected the Obama administration’s Commerce Clause doctrine. The court remains clearly committed to this previous holding: “Under our written Constitution . . . the limitation of congressional authority is not solely a matter of legislative grace.”
The court held that the mandate is constitutional only because Congress could have identified its enforcement penalty as a tax. The court thereby guaranteed that the argument ignited by the mandate will continue as the principal fault line in our polity.
The mandate’s opponents favor a federal government as James Madison fashioned it, one limited by the constitutional enumeration of its powers.
The mandate’s supporters favor government as Woodrow Wilson construed it, with limits as elastic as liberalism’s agenda, and powers acquiring derivative constitutionality by being necessary to, or efficient for, implementing government’s ambitions.
While I see Chief Justice John Roberts as nothing less than a Benedict Arnold because of his now joining the Liberal bloc of Supreme Court Justice, I hope you my readers have found both of these editorials as insightful as I did.
Both editorials make some really good points.
For me, as far as I'm concerned, the bottom line is that today's Supreme Court's decision only gives me one more reason to vote for Mitt Romney for President - after all, he has said that he will repeal ObamaCare if he's elected.
And yes, a clear Republican majority in Congress is needed to eliminate this mandate that fines American if one does not obey the government and join ObamaCare.
Right now, Republicans only control the House of Representatives - and that's only half of Congress. We need to put people in the Senate who will work on behalf of the American people and not for the liberal ideology that wants our government to be the master and us the slaves.
What Obama done since becoming President goes against the very foundation of our ideals as a nation. Our system of government, as a Republic, was engineered to work for the people - on behalf of the people - not for use by despots and tyrants.
The Constitution of the United States was never designed as a document to be used by the government as a way to Lord over us. It was designed and engineered to keep the government in line.
The Constitution is supposed to keep the government in check. It is a shame that the Supreme Courts has sided with those who see the government as an instrument of oppression.
That's really how I see it.
Until later, here is a little something that was passed on to me. For all practical purposes, I think it's probably standard issue to most Democrat politicians. Of course, ultra-left liberal politicians have the deluxe model.
Have a great day!
Story by Tom Correa