by j. Wright - January 6, 2010
Imagine that, the Republicans using one of the liberal Democrats favorite secondary legislative bodies, the Courts, to stop health care reform in it's tracks.
In a recent blog here, I brought up the issue of “standing” as it applies to who can bring, or file a legal suit, with the United States Supreme Court. In order to bring a case before the Justices the plaintiff(s) or ones bringing suit, must have ''standing,'' because apparently the Court is not allowed to open a case on their own even if they suspect that a law, or portion of it, is unconstitutional.
By definition in part, “standing” means, ''...that in the United States, the current doctrine is that a person cannot bring a suit challenging the constitutionality of a law unless the plaintiff can demonstrate that the plaintiff is (or will imminently be) harmed by the law. Additionally, the party suing must have ‘something to lose’ in order to sue unless they have automatic standing by action of law.''
Retired Judge Andrew Napolitano on FOX TV News recently confirmed that definition. Any citizen of the United States that will be harmed by the law, in this case, forced to buy health insurance under threat of financial fine or possible imprisonment, can bring suit because they have “standing.”
Judge Napolitano went on to say that if the pending health care reform legislation that is now being negotiated behind closed doors, not on C-Span as promised by Candidate Obama several times, is passed into law, a private citizen can seek relief and have the law deemed unconstitutional. Napolitano added that such action could also open the doors to looking at various other laws whose constitutionality has been questioned.
At this moment, Senator Orin Hatch, R-Utah, is putting this issue in motion. He can’t bring the suit personally but surely he will find an American citizen willing and able to do so. Time will tell.
Hatch and other Senators are arguing that the bill’s requirement that most people buy insurance or face a penalty violates the Constitution’s ban on taking private property for public purpose without just compensation.
Also, that a provision that could treat some insurance companies in Louisianna, Nebraska and Michigan different from others is a violation of the 14th Amendment's "equal protection'' clause.
The AG from Texas just joined in claiming that Congress can't force citizens to buy anything, including health insurance, by saying it falls under the Interstate Commerce clause.
Now it's getting serious, boy and girls. The AGs are using the "law of the land," our Constitution and the protections it affords the citizenry, to take a hard look at this mess the Democrats call reform.