Opposition To ObamaCare Can Be Principled?
AMERICANS WHO CHOSE to listen to, or read the transcripts of, three days of oral argument at the Supreme Court this week were treated to a challenging civics lesson on federalism, liberty and the limits and potential of government authority. Three points in particular struck us.
Sadly, even before the sessions on health-care reform had ended, some liberals were preemptively trying to delegitimize a potential defeat at the court. If the justices strike down the individual mandate to purchase health insurance, they said, they will prove themselves partisan, activist and, essentially, intellectually corrupt.
We share in the disappointment that the justices on both sides of their ideological divide are, for the most part, so predictable. That’s not, in the ideal world, how judging is supposed to work. But we also think there’s a kind of cynicism, or at least intellectual laziness, in asserting that this is an easy or obvious call — that no justice could possibly strike down the mandate out of honest, reasoned conviction. Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr. had his hands full defending the mandate, not because he’s a bad lawyer, but because it’s not an easy question.
If the federal government can force young adults to buy health insurance that they do not want, then what can’t the government do?