President Obama’s well publicized comments from Monday, discussing or even lecturing, the US Supreme Court on judicial activism seems to bode well for the State of Arizona. Obama infers that the court has no standing and no precedence in striking down a law, either in whole or in part, created by a democratically elected legislative body. No matter that the Court has taken this same action over 150 times. Precedent is obviously something that needs to be defined for The President in this case.
Obama’s comments, “Ultimately I am confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress,”
Where does Arizona come in to play? The Obama Administration is currently and vehemently fighting the Arizona immigration law in court. The effort, tax dollars, and demagoguery arrayed against Arizona are for what, if not to ask the court to over turn a law enacted by a majority of democratically elected legislature.
Today, Obama walked himself back a little and brought up the origins of the Healthcare Mandate. Stating that it was the Heritage Foundation that originally proposed individual mandates- well yes, in the 1970’s under a completely different law. It was later abandoned because of the obviousness of its failure. Yet lets contrast that with the Arizona SB1070 law, taken directly from the Federal law on immigration; certainly that has more bearing in the Arizona case.
Set aside for a moment the audacity that it takes for a sitting president to lecture, and even attempt to shame a court, into not judging the merits of a case on legality and constitutionality, but rather on humanity. The President spoke of letters he receives every day from people helped by Obamacare. These individual letters matter, yet hundreds of thousands of people voicing their opinions on the steps of congress are ignored by lawmakers and the Administration. Ironically one of the objections that Tea Partiers had to the original bill was the fact that it usurped the Constitution. There really should have been no surprises here.
It is still far from decided as to how the Court will rule on Obamacare, but the reaction of the President clearly shows where he thinks it is going. If not, why put the myriad of lawsuits his Administration brings against their own citizens at risk. Called into question as well is the Defense of Marriage Act. Whether one agrees with it or not, the Act was certainly passed by a democratically elected Congress.
Before leaving this discussion, there is one more glaring tip of the hand in the President’s quote. The use of the phrase strong majority shows that the President has an uncanny ability to delude himself and no regard for the intelligence of his audience. The President’s party held a 75 person majority in Congress at the vote, and it passed with seven votes. In the Senate, Massachusetts lawmakers had to pass a special law to place an appointed (not democratically elected) Senator into office in order to the get the 60th vote and pass the bill by the narrowest of margins possible. In fact, when the people of Massachusetts did democratically elect a Senator; that Senator made of point of running as the the 41st vote against Obamacare.
Obama, being the fine constitutional scholar the press believes him to be, will certainly site the commerce clause as giving the Federal Government free reign in passing laws that affect commerce. But, Justice Kennedy eloquently answered that question and explained why the individual mandate is much more than the Congress exercising their duty to regulate commerce. Justice Kennedy asked, “Can you create commerce in order to regulate it?” The Justice went on to question, “federal government has a duty to tell the individual citizen that it must act — and that is different from what we have in previous cases, and that changes the relationship of the Federal Government to the individual in a very fundamental way.” So much for precedent, yet the Tea Party understood the difference; to bad the blinders the President, Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid put on did not let them understand this. Unfortunately, the extreme practice of partisanship on the part of the Administration may have set us back years in solving the healthcare issue.
Back to Arizona, the one question you will never hear the mainstream media ask is, will you now vacate current rulings and drop further litigation against a law passed by a democratically elected legislature.