UPDATE: Roberts Sides with Left, Saves Obamacare (and Commerce Clause?) in 5-4 Decision

UPDATE 11:32 a.m. –

My prediction, Save Jerseyans – now that this is a “tax,” even MORE businesses will begin to drop employee health coverage (starting today) because paying the fine is cheaper.

Not good…

UPDATE 10:45 a.m. – ObamaCare Decision (pdf)

Initial media reports were incorrect, folks. Don’t know why I’m shocked by that.

I’m going through the decision now… Roberts joined the 5 libs… Kennedy voted with Scalia, Thomas and Alito.

Hmmm…

Another interesting nugget from Roberts:

The Constitution grants Congress the power to ‘regulate Commerce.’ The power to regulate commerce presupposes the existence of commercial activity to be regulated. If the power to “regulate” something included the power to create it, many of the provisions in the Constitution would be superfluous.”

Like I initially said (below the fold), Save Jerseyans, it’s clear Roberts was determined to avoid expanding the Commerce Clause. However, I also thought he was trying to limit the damage of Justice Kennedy’s decision to join the libs. Apparently that wasn’t the case. So why didn’t Roberts go for a full repeal if he had the chance? Only he knows…

UPDATE 10:15 a.m. – I predicted this morning that Chief Justice John Roberts might strategically join the U.S. Supreme Court’s “Left” caucus to limit damage.

And that’s what it looks like may’ve happened, Save Jerseyans.

I still need to read the whole thing, but here’s the key line from my quick review:

Congress had the power to impose the exaction in Section 5000A under the taxing power, and that Section 5000A need not be read to do more than impose a tax. This is sufficient to sustain it.

So it is a tax after all, folks. Something the Obama Administration denied for years than reversed course on during oral argument. Good luck campaiging on passing the LARGEST tax increase in federal history, Mr. President!

My initial read? Chief Justice Roberts appears to have tried to satisfy both sides by saving the law but refusing to enlarge the scope of the Commerce Clause. You could argue this decision is important because, until now, the Commerce Clause line of cases were trending in the opposite direction since the 1930’s New Deal days.

The only answer was always at the ballot box, my friends. Justice Roberts would’ve put together a different opinion today had Mitt Romney and GOP U.S. Senate selected the last two appointments; also keep in mind that President Romney and a Republican Congress can repeal a tax (which, thanks to Roberts, the legislation can now be clearly defined)… just a couple important thoughts to internalize and carry forward into November!

More to follow…

 

Matt Rooney

Matt Rooney

Save Jersey’s Founder and Blogger-in-Chief, Matt Rooney is a widely-respected New Jersey political commentator, practicing attorney at the law firm of DeMichele & DeMichele in Haddon Heights, and a graduate of the Rutgers Camden School of Law.

7 Comments

  1. if you at Kennedy's history – even on cases where conservatives disagree with him such as gay rights – he tends to fall on the side of the individual over the government.

    Kennedy is underrated justice.

    Roberts is now worse than souter.

Leave a Reply