The Senate Judiciary Committee just concluded its hearing on the constitutionality of the national health care law. There were many illuminating points made in the roughly two and a half hour hearing, but there was one in particular that I want to highlight.
Michael Carvin, a lawyer at Jones Day, made the point that there’s a key distinction between the mandate and Congressional efforts to regulate commerce. It’s one thing for the government to impose regulations on insurers, such as the requirement that they cover those with pre-existing conditions, but doing so causes a distortion in commerce. And the mandate is an effort to “ameliorate” the distortion to the market caused by Congress.