Posts Tagged ‘Vinson’

ObamaCare Ruled Unconstitutional Again, This Time By Federal Appeals Court

August 12, 2011

Here’s the great news of the day: ObamaCare is unconstitutional, which is to say it violates the Constitution of the United States, which is to say it is un-American.

I pointed out – and documented at length – some time back that Democrats couldn’t care less about the Constitution of the United States of America.

And the “Constitutional scholar” president is at the head of the list of Democrats who have been using the Constitution like toilet paper.

Appeals court strikes health insurance requirement
By Greg Bluestein
Associated Press / August 12, 2011

ATLANTA (AP) – A federal appeals court panel on Friday struck down the requirement in President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul package that virtually all Americans must carry health insurance or face penalties.

The divided three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the so-called individual mandate, siding with 26 states that had sued to block the law. But the panel didn’t go as far as a lower court that had invalidated the entire overhaul as unconstitutional.

The states and other critics argued the law violates people’s rights, while the Justice Department countered that the legislative branch was exercising a “quintessential” power.

The decision, penned by Chief Judge Joel Dubina and Circuit Judge Frank Hull, found that “the individual mandate contained in the Act exceeds Congress’s enumerated commerce power.”

“What Congress cannot do under the Commerce Clause is mandate that individuals enter into contracts with private insurance companies for the purchase of an expensive product from the time they are born until the time they die,” the opinion said.

Circuit Judge Stanley Marcus disagreed in a dissent.

The 11th Circuit isn’t the first appeals court to weigh in on the issue. The federal appeals court in Cincinnati upheld the government’s new requirement that most Americans buy health insurance, and an appeals court in Richmond has heard similar legal constitutional challenges to the law.

But the Atlanta-based court is considered by many observers to be the most pivotal legal battleground yet because it reviewed a sweeping ruling by a Florida judge.

U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson’s ruling not only struck down a requirement that nearly all Americans carry health insurance, but he also threw out other provisions ranging from Medicare discounts for some seniors to a change that allows adult children up to age 26 to remain on their parents’ coverage.

The states urged the 11th Circuit to uphold Vinson’s ruling, saying in a court filing that letting the law stand would set a troubling precedent that “would imperil individual liberty, render Congress’s other enumerated powers superfluous, and allow Congress to usurp the general police power reserved to the states.”

The Justice Department countered that Congress had the power to require most people to buy health insurance or face tax penalties because Congress has the authority to regulate interstate business. It said the legislative branch was exercising its “quintessential” rights when it adopted the new law.

During oral arguments in June, the three-judge panel repeatedly raised questions about the overhaul and expressed unease with the insurance requirement. Each of the three worried aloud if upholding the landmark law could open the door to Congress adopting other sweeping economic mandates.

The arguments unfolded in what’s considered one of the nation’s most conservative appeals courts. But the randomly selected panel represents different judicial perspectives. None of the three is considered either a stalwart conservative or an unfaltering liberal.

Dubina, an appointee of President George H.W. Bush, is not considered to be as reflexively conservative as some of his colleagues. But he’s been under particular scrutiny because of his daughter’s outspoken opposition to the health care overhaul. U.S. Rep. Martha Dubina Roby, a Montgomery, Ala., Republican elected in November, voted to repeal the health care law.

Marcus and Hull were both tapped by President Bill Clinton to join the court. But Marcus was also previously appointed by Republican President Ronald Reagan to serve on the Florida bench after several years as Miami’s lead federal prosecutor. And Hull, a former county judge in Atlanta, is known for subjecting both sides of the counsel table to challenging questions.

Obama lied, health care died.

I also just this morning wrote about the pathological dishonesty of Barack Obama with his health care takeover, having no idea whatsoever that view was about to be further confirmed today.

Here’s yet another major demonstration of Barack Obama’s personal and professional dishonesty:

ObamaCare’s Mandate Is Not A Tax, Except When It Is
By David Hogberg   
Thu., June 17, 2010 2:06 PM ET

The Obama administration has filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit from 20 states opposing ObamaCare’s individual mandate, which requires almost all Americans to purchase health insurance.

According to Obama’s Justice Department, the individual mandate is constitutional because “requiring individuals to buy health insurance is an exercise of Congress’ taxing authority.” (The National Federation of Independent Businesses has more here.)

President Obama insisted repeatedly during the health care debate that the individual mandate is “absolutely” not a tax increase.

More broadly, the administration’s legal position could create a big political problem. Back on Sept. 12, 2008, Obama said:

I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.

On multiple occasions Obama promised, “you will not see any of your taxes increase one single dime.”

Some argue that Obama already violated that pledge when he signed the State Children’s Health Insurance Plan bill that boosted cigarette taxes. And that may, indeed, be the case.

But the individual mandate “tax” hits almost everyone and gives people no choice.

If the administration continues with its legal position, Obama is admitting he’s violated his tax pledge, giving political fodder to Republicans. But if he stops the DOJ, that weakens the case for an individual mandate, a critical part of ObamaCare.

Maintaining a campaign pledge vs. ramming through the transformation of American society? That’s a no-brainer for this president.

An update to that article: it’s not “20 states” any more.  At least 38 states have tried to protect themselves from the ravages of this anti-American takeover of the health care system.

What did Obama say in what turns out to have been his “read my lips” moment re: ObamaCare?

(AP) President Barack Obama says requiring people to get health insurance and fining them if they don’t would not amount to a backhanded tax increase. “I absolutely reject that notion,” the president said.

[…]

He told CBS’ “Face the Nation” that he will keep his pledge not to raise taxes on families earning up to $250,000, and that much of the final bill – hundreds of billions of dollars over the next 10 years – can be achieved from savings within the current system. Coming up with the rest remains a key legislative obstacle.

And now there is no question that if ObamaCare ISN’T A TAX – which would make Barack Obama a documented liar when he publicly said it wasn’t – that it is a clearly unconstitutional takeover.

Obama didn’t just lie about this central element of his ObamaCare.  He’s lied over and over and over again.  And even Obama’s own fellow DEMOCRATS have recognized that Obama has lied about ObamaCare.

Either way, the man stinking up the Oval Office is the most dishonest and profoundly anti-American president in this once great nation’s entire history.

Justice Roger Vinson of the U.S. District Court in Pensacola – whose previous ruling that ObamaCare was inherently unconstitutional was cited and reaffirmed today – explained why ObamaCare was unconstitutional and un-American in terms such as these:

Vinson rejects the administration’s argument that the health care market is unique since nobody can truly opt out–and that not buying insurance is in itself an economic activity since the cost of care then falls on others. Vinson mocks this argument, writing: “Everyone must participate in the food market… under this logic, Congress could [mandate] that every adult purchase and consume wheat bread daily.” If they didn’t buy wheat bread they might have a bad diet which would put a strain on the health care system, he writes.

Later he offers another analogy: “Congress could require that everyone above a certain income threshold buy a General Motors automobile — now partially government-owned — because those who do not buy GM cars (or those who buy foreign cars) are adversely impacting commerce and a taxpayer-subsidized business.” Vinson concludes: “The individual mandate exceeds Congress’ commerce power, as it is understood, defined, and applied in the existing Supreme Court case law.”

By the way, DEMOCRATS as a species are now documented liars.  Here’s now DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz just telling flat-out LIES about ObamaCare.  If Democrats want to have any integrity whatsoever, they could start by throwing out this nasty demagogue liar.

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When Assessing Obama, The Best Word Turns Out To Be ‘Contempt’

February 5, 2011

How many times have we heard some breathless-with-adoration mainstream media “journalist” tell us that Barack Obama is a “constitutional professor”?

What we actually find when examining the record is that Obama is more like a “constitutional demolition expert.”

Take a look at two recent developments to witness Obama’s contempt for our Constitution and the Separation of Powers that has kept it intact for going on 230 years:

Judge in La. holds Interior Department in contempt over offshore oil drilling moratorium
By MICHAEL KUNZELMAN , Associated Press
Last update: February 2, 2011 – 8:05 PM

NEW ORLEANS – The federal judge who struck down the Obama administration’s moratorium on deepwater drilling after the Gulf oil spill held the Interior Department in contempt Wednesday, and ordered the federal agency to pay attorneys’ fees for several offshore oil companies.

U.S. District Judge Martin Feldman chided the department for its “dismissive conduct” after he overturned the agency’s decision to halt any new permits for deepwater projects and suspend drilling on 33 exploratory wells after the Deepwater Horizon blast, which killed 11 workers and triggered the massive spill.

After Feldman overturned the government’s moratorium in June, the agency issued a second nearly identical suspension.

“Such dismissive conduct, viewed in tandem with the reimposition of a second blanket and substantively identical moratorium and in light of the national importance of this case, provide this court with clear and convincing evidence of the government’s contempt of this court’s preliminary injunction order,” he wrote.

A magistrate will consider how much the companies’ attorneys should get.

An Interior Department spokeswoman wouldn’t comment. A lawyer for the companies hailed the ruling.

“We’re obviously delighted with the court’s recognition of the government’s manipulation of the judicial review process,” said Carl Rosenblum, an attorney for Hornbeck Offshore Services and other companies that sued over the first moratorium.

Realize that the Interior Department isn’t in contempt; Obama is in contempt.  The Secretary of the Interior serves at the pleasure of Barry Hussein.  The Interior Department is pursuing the will of the president.  And the president has contempt for the court, contempt for the law and naked contempt for the Constitution.

And simultaneously there is this (story from Legal Insurrection):

Monday, January 31, 2011
Florida Judge Rules Against Obamacare, Injunction Denied As Unnecessary Since Entire Law Unconstitutional

Federal Judge Roger Vinson of the Northern District of Florida, in a lawsuit by 26 state attorney generals, has held that Obamacare is unconstitutional.  Judge Vinson first found that the mandate was unconstitutional, and then found that the mandate could not be severed from the rest of the law, requiring that the entire law be deemed unconstitutional.

Judge Vinson found that there was no need for an injunction, since the declaratory judgment that the entire law was invalid was sufficient.  In effect, there is nothing left to enjoin, since no part of the law survived.  By contrast, in the ruling in Virginia last year invalidating the mandate, the Judge severed the mandate from the rest of the law (but denied an injunction preventing the rest of the law from taking effect). 

Here is the key language from the Order showing that Judge Vinson expects the federal government to obey the declaration that the law is unenforceable in its entirety:

“…there is a long-standing presumption “that officials of the Executive Branch will adhere to the law as declared by the court. As a result, the declaratory judgment is the functional equivalent of an injunction.” See Comm. on Judiciary of U.S. House of Representatives v. Miers, 542 F.3d 909, 911 (D.C. Cir. 2008); accord Sanchez-Espinoza v. Reagan, 770 F.2d 202, 208 n.8 (D.C. Cir. 1985) (“declaratory judgment is, in a context such as this where federal officers are defendants, the practical equivalent of specific relief such as an injunction . . . since it must be presumed that federal officers will adhere to the law as declared by the court”) (Scalia, J.) (emphasis added).

There is no reason to conclude that this presumption should not apply here. Thus, the award of declaratory relief is adequate and separate injunctive relief is not necessary.”

In this sense, this decision is far more sweeping than the Virginia case, and presents a greater problem for the Obama administration which arguably does not have authority to implement any aspect of Obamacare.

Here is the conclusion of the Order (emphasis mine):

“The existing problems in our national health care system are recognized by everyone in this case. There is widespread sentiment for positive improvements that will reduce costs, improve the quality of care, and expand availability in a way that the nation can afford. This is obviously a very difficult task. Regardless of how laudable its attempts may have been to accomplish these goals in passing the Act, Congress must operate within the bounds established by the Constitution. Again, this case is not about whether the Act is wise or unwise legislation. It is about the Constitutional role of the federal government.

For the reasons stated, I must reluctantly conclude that Congress exceeded the bounds of its authority in passing the Act with the individual mandate. That is not to say, of course, that Congress is without power to address the problems and inequities in our health care system. The health care market is more than one sixth of the national economy, and without doubt Congress has the power to reform and regulate this market. That has not been disputed in this case. The principal dispute has been about how Congress chose to exercise that power here.

Because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void. This has been a difficult decision to reach, and I am aware that it will have indeterminable implications. At a time when there is virtually unanimous agreement that health care reform is needed in this country, it is hard to invalidate and strike down a statute titled “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.” …

In closing, I will simply observe, once again, that my conclusion in this case is based on an application of the Commerce Clause law as it exists pursuant to the Supreme Court’s current interpretation and definition. Only the Supreme Court (or a Constitutional amendment) can expand that.

For all the reasons stated above and pursuant to Rule 56 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment (doc. 80) is hereby GRANTED as to its request for declaratory relief on Count I of the Second Amended Complaint, and DENIED as to its request for injunctive relief; and the defendants’ motion for summary judgment (doc. 82) is hereby GRANTED on Count IV of the Second Amended Complaint. The respective cross-motions are each DENIED. 

In accordance with Rule 57 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and Title 28, United States Code, Section 2201(a), a Declaratory Judgment shall be entered separately, declaring “The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” unconstitutional.”

[Please click on that article for more on this story.]

“Contempt” is all over Obama on both of these major federal cases.  Obama is all about contempt.  Along with hypocrisy, contempt is the blood that flows through his veins.

To put it succinctly, to whatever extent Obama knows a damn thing about the Constitution, it merely makes him all the more in contempt of it, and all the more personally contemptible.

This “constitutional expert” is on the record tacitly saying, “I’m the pharaoh; I’m the emperor.  And the Constitution means whatever the hell I want it to mean.  And federal judges be damned.”

Barack Hussein’s contempt for our freedoms and the Constitution which guarantees those freedoms is evident in other areas, as well.  And we see that this rabid intolerance for freedom characterizes the thinking of the left.

For the record, this contempt for the Constitution extends beyond Obama and contaminates his entire Democrat Party

Even when liberals like Obama pay lip service to the Constitution, they only do so as a purely rhetorical device in order to ignore everything it stands for.  Because the REAL intent of the Democrat Party is “to control the people.”  Democrats believe that there is no constitutional limit on their ability to regulate the lives of the American people.  And “Democrats” and “democracy” are antonyms

Obama is making the founding fathers spin in thier graves.  And they will keep spinning in their graves until Obama is finally out of the White House on his ear in disgrace.

Obama is our first Afrocentrict socialist redistributionist radical president.  His vision of the Constitution is – to phrase it in his own terms when he demonized the Constitutiona and the founding fathers who wrote it – “fundamentally flawed.”  And because of that fundamentally flawed thinking, Obama believes that the Government should stand in the place of God and owns everything that the people create and produce.