T Nation

Fed. Judge Invalidates Key Part of Healthcare


It's about time.


A U.S. judge in Virginia on Monday declared unconstitutional a key part of President Barack Obama's landmark healthcare law in the first major setback on an issue that will likely end up at the Supreme Court.

U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson, appointed to the bench by President George W. Bush in 2002, backed arguments by the state of Virginia that Congress exceeded its authority by requiring that individuals buy health insurance by 2014 or face a fine.

.."The Minimum Essential Coverage Provision is neither within the letter nor the spirit of the Constitution," Hudson wrote in a 42-page decision. However, he declined to invalidate the entire healthcare law, a small victory for Obama.


So question: How can the states mandate auto insurance (without which you would get a fine) but can't mandate health insurance. (I don't care either way, I have insurance)


You don't have to buy auto insurance for simply being alive. You don't even have to get it if you choose to drive. You only have to buy it if you choose to own a car. There is a little bit of a difference.


Only if you want to drive on public roads.


The same provisions were also upheld by two other judges so it really doesn't mean much at this point ... from what I understand.


The same provisions were also upheld by two other judges so it really doesn't mean much at this point ... from what I understand.


Adding to what DD said. The states could ( I think) say you have to buy health ins. It is the federal govt that can not. It all has to do with the 10th admendment of states rights. The constitution gave very few powers to the federal govt. In my opinion about half of what the federal govt does is unconstitutional.


Just another step to the USSC.


True. I will accept that. My whole thing was just that there are prerequisites for a ton of other things in life, why not making one if you plan on ever going to the doctor, you have to have insurance. It is hard to say what the "right" answer is no something like this. And by right, I mean ultimately best for all. I think requiring auto insurance is a great idea, so who knows...


Ah, if that is the case, that makes a lot of sense, thanks.


Going to the doctor isn't part of the prerequisite. And you can still pay someone to fix a car without having auto insurance.


As well as it's a STATE, not Federal Mandate.

The difference is that you go broke if you don't buy Health Ins....so buy it. You are driving a deadly weapon with a car, thus the mandate. Your poor driving effects others lives.


This is no small victory for Obama, not at all.

If they have to go back and rewrite a part of the law, it must be passed in the new upcoming Congress, which will never get out of the Republican controlled House.


This rips the teeth out of the bill. If they cannot penalize you for not having insurance then I imagine that many will opt out.


Exactly. Which a lot were threatening to do anyway thereby driving up the costs of the "exchange" that the gov't is setting up.


someone correct me if I am wrong, but I thought if one piece is found to be unconstitutional, then the whole thing was.


I'm pretty confident that only the parts that were in the case, in this instance, requiring the purchase of health care, would be ruled unconstitutional. This happened with parts of the patriot act. However, I also believe that the law in question is what matter, like the text could say that once part is null and void, so is the rest. I know that parts of the New Deal was ruled unconstitutional leading to quite a stir, court-packing, etc.

The most interesting thing here really is how its argued once it gets to the supreme court, and what the justices choose to see. I could see them saying that for there to be a mandate, there has to be a public option available. the 10th amendment argument is shaky at best seeing a lot of the federal government would fail that test, its a can of worms no one wants to open.


What a legislative disaster.

What would the political world do without American politics? So entertaining


Now just a "system of things" minute here. What's this?!?!?!? A Jehovah's Witness who trusts this pagan God hatng government with what's "best for all" for everybody's health?!?!?!?!? Ohhhh , I'm shocked. You oughta know better n this Spanky.


Depends on how important the piece is to the legislation. They have to prove that the bill can work without this mandate(it can't).