The leader of the Republicans in the Senate is filing a friend-of-the-court brief supporting the multistate lawsuit that has been filed against the abortion-funding ObamaCare health care law.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell joins the states in arguing that the ObamaCare law is unconstitutional because it requires Americans to purchase health insurance who may not want to do so. The pro-life community has expressed concerns that the bill allows for abortion funding using taxpayer funds and doesn’t protect those Americans who want to opt out.
The McConnell brief, according to Politico, argues the mandatory purchase requirement “dramatically oversteps the bounds of the Commerce [Clause] which has always been understood as a power to regulate, and not to compel, economic activity.”
There are three lawsuits pending in Michigan, Virginia and the main case — featuring the most number of states is at the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Florida — is expected to wind up before the Supreme Court. McConnell is asking fellow lawmakers to sign onto his legal papers supporting the lawsuit.
Meanwhile, McConnell says Senate Republicans will join their House colleagues in doing everything they can to limit, de-fund or stop the implementation of the ObamaCare law if they are unsuccessful in repealing it.
“Oversight will play a crucial role in Republican efforts,” he said, according to AP. “We may not be able to bring about straight repeal in the next two years … but we can compel administration officials to attempt to defend this indefensible health spending bill.”
That could include severe questioning for Donald Berwick, the health care rationing advocate President Barack Obama appointed to lead Medicare and Medicaid and implement the health care reform scheme.
Macchiarola, Republican staff director for the Senate health committee, added: “This past Congress has had no oversight over the (Medicare) director. He hasn’t testified. The department has been unresponsive to letters from members. And it’s astonishing.”
Berwick has yet to testify before committees that oversee his program despite repeated requests for him to do so.
The federal judge in Florida ruled in October the lawsuit more than 20 states have filed against the ObamaCare health care law, that allows abortion funding, can proceed. The judge ruled that parts of the lawsuit can go to trial. His decision joined a similar decision by a federal court in Virginia, which also allowed it to move ahead.
U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson issued a written ruling saying the court needs to issue a decision on the question of whether or not it is a violation of the Constitution to force Americans to purchase health care insurance.
He will hold a hearing on December 16 on the question, though he ultimate decision will ultimately wind up before the Supreme Court.
The key component of the decision Vinson issued concerns the individual mandate, and he appears sympathetic to those who oppose it, thus opposing the entire law.
“At this stage in the litigation, this is not even a close call…But, in this case we are dealing with something very different. The individual mandate applies across the board. People have no choice and there is no way to avoid it,” he wrote. “Those who fall under the individual mandate either comply with it, or they are penalized. It is not based on an activity that they make the choice to undertake.”
“Of course, to say that something is “novel” and “unprecedented” does not necessarily mean that it is “unconstitutional” and “improper.” There may be a first time for anything. But, at this stage of the case, the plaintiffs have most definitely stated a plausible claim with respect to this cause of action,” he said.