The key to the Supreme Court’s upcoming ruling will be clear recognition of constitutional alternatives to Obamacare.
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Such a health care safety net is entirely constitutional. Consequently, striking down Obamacare as unconstitutional does not mean condemning the needy to suffering without essential health care.
The Supreme Court in deciding to hear the Obamacare appeal included the question of whether Obamacare’s massive expansion of Medicaid is constitutional. CBO projects that by 2021, Obamacare will explode the Medicaid program for the poor to covering 100 million Americans. Medicaid is financed jointly by the states as well as the feds, so this explosion imposes massive costs on the states. Can the federal government do that constitutionally?
The traditional answer would be if the states do not want to accept the federal assistance financing Medicaid with all the strings Obamacare attaches to that assistance, the states are free to turn down the federal Medicaid funding. But the challenge to Obamacare on these grounds argues that the federal Medicaid financing is now so enormous, and so essential to serving the poor in each state, that states as a practical matter are no longer actually free to turn it down, regardless of the strings attached.
Of course that is true. In regard to Medicaid, Obamacare treats the states as sub-departments of the federal government, like local government units in France, rather than as the sovereign governments they are under traditional American federalism. Federalism was a chief concern of ACRU founder Robert Carleson, as well as his boss Ronald Reagan. So the ACRU will take the lead in arguing this cause before the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court decision in this case will come down in the summer of 2012, just before the election. Regardless of the outcome, the decision will be a political disaster for Obama’s reelection. If the Court strikes it down, that will confirm that Obama wasted his first two years in office taking America on an unconstitutional frolic, rather than addressing America’s most urgent problems in an effective way.
If the Court upholds it, then voters will know the only way to get rid of it is to vote Obama and his Democrats out of office. That will be a result they will have so richly earned.
But if my predictions above are correct, the Court’s decision will not only begin the long road back to the real Constitution. It will be the first step in real entitlement reform, as the Republicans likely to take over in 2012 are already coalescing around sophisticated entitlement reform with proven political viability. More on that next week.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?