Monday, January 31, 2011

Health Care Reform Unconstitutional? Wait and See

Posted By on Mon, Jan 31, 2011 at 4:34 PM

Gibson noted earlier today that federal Judge Roger Vinson ruled that the Affordable Care Act was unconstitutional.

Ezra Klein of the Washington Post has more analysis of the decision here:


Roger Vinson, the second Republican judge to rule on the constitutionality of the individual mandate, has, as expected, ruled against it. More surprising is that he's decided that the presence of the mandate means the rest of the law must be overturned, too, which is an extremely radical step. The full ruling has a very Bush v. Gore feeling, as Vinson concedes that his position is activist in the extreme and a break from the court's usual preference for limited rulings, but says, in effect, that he's going to do it just this once. "This conclusion is reached with full appreciation for the 'normal rule' that reviewing courts should ordinarily refrain from invalidating more than the unconstitutional part of a statute," Vinson writes, "but non-severability is required based on the unique facts of this case and the particular aspects of the Act. This is not a situation that is likely to be repeated." Italics mine.

That puts Vinson on the far right of this debate: Previously, Henry Hudson had ruled the individual mandate unconstitutional but the rest of the law constitutional, and Norman Moon and George Steeh had ruled both the mandate and the rest of the legislation constitutional. So there's currently a 2-2 split: The judges appointed by Democrats think the law constitutional, and the judges appointed by Republicans think the law varying degrees of unconstitutional. Whatever happens to the legislation at the end of the day, the clear level of politicization in the judiciary is getting its day in the sun. Vinison even shouts out to the Boston Tea Party in his decision.

Klein explains why the GOP might come to regret opposing the individual mandate here.

TNR's Jonathan Cohn pokes holes in Vinson's ruling here.

Tags: , , , ,

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Previously in the Range

More by Jim Nintzel

  • Zona Politics: Your Primary Election Round-Up!

    • Aug 27, 2016
  • The Skinny

    Secret emails, fear of a bugged office, 911 calls: the greatest hits of Pima County Supervisor Ally Miller
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • The Skinny

    Kirkpatrick continues her effort to link McCain to Trump, while McCain links Kirkpatrick to Hillary.
    • Aug 18, 2016
  • More »

Staff Pick

Angels in America Part 1: Millennium Approaches

Tony Kushner's masterpiece is a rumination on America in the 80s told via the tensions of gay… More

@ The Rogue Theatre Thursdays-Saturdays, 7:30-10:30 p.m. and First Saturday, Sunday of every month, 2-5 p.m. Continues through Sept. 26 300 E. University Blvd.

» More Picks

Submit an Event Listing

Popular Content

  1. Zona Politics: Your Primary Election Round-Up! (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  2. Hazel Needs a Home (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  3. Win Tickets To See Colvin & Earle (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  4. Cinema Clips: Southside with You (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  5. Casa Video Top 10 (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)

© 2016 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation