RUSH: Heritage Foundation Morning Bell, another victory on the road to repeal. Morning Bell. They say Obamacare will be repealed now. It is only a question of when. Here’s President Obama yesterday afternoon again in Tampa, WFLA-TV Eyeball News. Question: ‘When it comes to the health care decision, that parts of it are unconstitutional, what does that do? Your opinion on health care? What’s your reaction to the judge’s ruling?’
OBAMA: That’s the nature of these things. You know, when Social Security was passed, there were all kinds of lawsuits. When the Civil Rights Act was passed and the Voting Rights Act was passed there were all kinds of lawsuits.
RUSH: Yeah, and he’s saying that they didn’t win anything, and these lawsuits they aren’t gonna win anything. But this that happened yesterday with Judge Hudson is big. ‘The White House and their leftist allies were quick to try and minimize this body blow to Obamacare, arguing that 14 previous court challenges have been dismissed by the courts. This desperate spin doesn’t even pass the laugh test. The 42-page decision is the first by a federal court this far along the litigation process and the first brought by a state (the case was filed by Virginia Attorney General Kenneth Cuccinelli). And soon Judge Roger Vinson of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida is expected to rule on an even larger challenge to Obamacare brought by 16 state attorneys general, four governors, two private citizens, and the National Federation of Independent Business.
‘In an early stage of that litigation, Judge Vinson wrote: ‘The individual mandate applies across the board. People have no choice and there is no way to avoid it. 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. Rather, it is based solely on citizenship and on being alive,” and clearly the judge was saying that’s not kosher. That’s not constitutional. ‘Judge Hudson used very similar reasoning in rejecting the Obama Administration’s claim that since ‘every individual in the United States will require health care at some point in their lifetime’ the federal government has the power to force Americans to buy health insurance now. Hudson writes: ‘Of course, the same reasoning could apply to transportation, housing, or nutritional decisions. This broad definition of the economic activity subject to congressional regulation lacks logical limitation and is unsupported by Commerce Clause jurisprudence.”
So there will be other courts with the same opinion as this coming up shortly.
RUSH: What you have to know about the entire Obamacare debate, folks, and even about the ruling of Judge Hudson yesterday is that this is essentially about liberty. Do politicians in Washington get to tell us how to live? Including what we have to buy, what services we have to purchase, or do we get to tell them what to do and what we do or do or not want? This is about liberty. This is about free will. And this ruling highlights this. Health care here is almost beside the point. Health care is being used as a Trojan horse to take down the nation. Do not think otherwise. It is not about health care. Just like the Obama economic policy is not about jobs. It’s all about taking down this nation, for whatever reason, Obama’s got a chip on his shoulder, he’s always been hateful country, he’s been taught to be hateful, doesn’t matter.
Look at what’s being debated here and everybody’s celebrating. The regime was gonna tell everybody they had to buy health insurance simply because they’re gonna get health treatment over the course of their lives, they’re gonna have to buy it. The Constitution says no. The government doesn’t have that power. This regime is arguing in court that it does, and frightfully there are a lot of Democrat appointed judges who agree with the notion this is perfectly within the government’s purview to order citizens what to buy, what they must have. And yesterday with Michelle Obama coming out saying it’s us, we’re gonna determine what your kids eat before school, during school, after school, and at dinner, because you can’t trust the parents to do that. So essentially this is about liberty and freedom and a Trojan horse that’s designed to take the country down. We can get caught up in the argument, the commerce clause. What we’re really arguing about here is does some politician, some president in a far away capital get to tell us what we must spend our money on, much less money that we would otherwise have if this guy weren’t the president.
Now, Judge Hudson here, he wrote, after talking about the commerce clause, he moved on to the regime’s claim that the individual mandate was actually a tax that would make it constitutional under the general welfare clause. Here’s what he wrote: ”This Court’s analysis begins with the unequivocal denials by the Executive and Legislative branches that the [individual mandate] was a tax.’ It was only when the Administration found itself before a judge, not in front of voters, that the White House conveniently shifted its rationale. Judge Hudson saw through this deception, identified the individual mandate as the penalty it is,’ and when the regime first got wind that people were gonna call it a penalty, ‘No, no, no, it’s not a penalty. It’s a tax, and we have the power to tax under the general welfare clause.’ The judge said can’t change in the middle of the game. ‘This Court’s analysis begins with the unequivocal denials by the Executive and Legislative branches that the [individual mandate] was a tax.’ Then they ultimately said that it was a tax, giving themselves power under the general welfare clause to go ahead and force everybody to buy this. He rejected the regime’s mandate-as-tax claim.
‘It was not a total victory for Cuccinelli, however.’ And again, this is the Morning Bell, the Heritage Foundation, ‘Judge Hudson rejected Virginia’s request to strike down the entire law.’ I, in my own legal naivete, I was wondering why he couldn’t issue an injunction at that point. But I’ll get an answer to that at some point down the road. ‘Despite claims by the President himself, and authors of the legislation like Senator Max Baucus (D–MT), Judge Hudson found that the Section 1501 was ‘severable’ from the rest of the law and voided only that section and ‘directly-dependent provisions which make specific reference to 1501.’ Judge Vinson, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court will all be free to revisit this issue.
Now, the Heritage people say: ‘But whether or not courts will invalidate just Obamacare’s individual mandate is rapidly becoming irrelevant. Obamacare simply may not survive that long. It is already collapsing under its own financial and bureaucratic weight. Just last week, Congress voted to stop reductions in Medicare payments to doctors by raiding future revenues from Obamacare’s insurance subsidy program. The number of waivers the Obama Administration has to grant from Obamacare’s unworkable regulations grows each day.’ It’s up now to 250 companies and unions that have been granted waivers, in other words, exceptions. They don’t have to have the law applied to them. So in that sense it is falling apart. The powers that be are admitting that following the law, following the tenets of Obamacare will be destructive. We won’t be able to stay in business if we follow this. And Obama doesn’t want that to happen this soon. He’ll be more than happy after the 2012 elections for the bill to be implemented in time and ways that will destroy businesses, particularly the private sector insurance industry. That’s one of many objectives here.
‘Doctors are telling pollsters they will leave the medical profession in droves if Obamacare is implemented as planned by 2014. And according to the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll Obamacare is now more unpopular than ever, with only 43 percent approving the law and 52 percent opposed. Obamacare will be repealed. It is only a question of when.’ Randy Barnett — this is the American Spectator blog by Philip Klein — Georgetown law professor Randy Barnett says that a court decision is a game changer.
”This was a huge day. The government needed to run the table on all of these cases to survive, and it failed. It basically needed all the judges to say it was constitutional, and as soon as they had one that said it wasn’t, then we have a different game.’ First, he said, ‘It changes the posture, because now this will go to the Court of Appeals, and the Court of Appeals is going to have to reverse this judge.’ But in the more immediate term, it will impact a similar suit against ObamaCare brought by 20 states led by Florida, he predicted. U.S. District Court Judge Roger Vinson, of the Northern District of Florida, is scheduled to hear arguments on Thursday.
‘Barnett explained that had today’s decision gone the other way, the Obama administration would have been able to argue that three judges had upheld the law, but now the state of Florida can point to a case in which the law was ruled unconstitutional.’ Barnett says, ‘Basically, every court has rejected the tax power argument. I never thought that argument was going anywhere, and it hasn’t gone anywhere. This is another sign that this thing is going to have to rise or fall on the Commerce Clause and Necessary and Proper Clause. And the tax power thing is going to be gone.’
Christian Science Monitor: ‘ Health Care Law: Why Federal Judge Struck Key Provision Down.’ A couple quotes. ‘The Obama administration has defended the law by saying that Americans who refuse to buy health insurance are making an economic decision to not participate in the national health-care insurance market.’ That’s true, as freedom allows, my point earlier. ‘That decision, government lawyers say, has economic consequences that are within Congress’s power to address,’ which, again, to my lay ears, is a very slim argument. Another quote. ‘Hudson also rejected the Obama administration’s argument that the law had also been passed under Congress’s broad taxing authority. The fine required for not purchasing health-care coverage is a penalty, not a tax, he said. ‘If allowed to stand as a tax,’ the judge wrote in a footnote, it ‘would be the only tax in US history to be levied directly on individuals for their failure to affirmatively engage in activity mandated by the government not specifically delineated in the Constitution.”
So as you hear more and more lawyers and legal people weigh in on this, it becomes obvious that health care is not what’s being discussed here. This is personal freedom. This is liberty. Health care is the Trojan horse to take the nation down, and it always has been, and this has been one of our premiere takes on this program on health care since it all began, that it wasn’t about health care. Two thousand plus pages. This is not about health care. This is 2,000-plus pages spelling out the power government has; 2,000-plus pages defining what power and freedom individuals lose in all this. The idealists want to say, ‘No, no, no, Rush, we’re the only civilized, industrialized country that doesn’t have national health care.’ It may be true, but there’s a reason for that. We’re not a socialist country, yet.
And here’s the ABC News story on the new low in support for health care. ‘The law’s never been popular, with support peaking at just 48 percent in November 2009. Today it’s slipped to 43 percent, numerically its lowest in ABC/Post polling.’ So when the ABC and the Washington Post poll is trending this way, you really have to believe that Americans get this issue now, and they understand how it will impact them. Nothing the Democrats have said in one year since they rammed this through has convinced anybody there’s a different reality than a bad result. If the Democrats had persuaded people — remember Pelosi said we have to pass it to find out what’s in it.
Well, more and more people are finding out what’s in it, and more and more people are saying they don’t want it, and no effort, not one attempt by any Obama administration official or Democrat in Congress has been able to persuade people that this is a good thing. We’re in for years of wrangling over this and it’s crucial, folks, that the Republican Congress begin immediately to repeal this, send up a repeal bill every week and make the president defend this, make him veto it, and at some point we are gonna be able to override the veto, as we get closer to the 2012 election, and the Democrats in the Senate realize where their reelection lies.
I don’t accept this notion we can’t override the veto, and I guarantee you there are a lot of other people in Washington who don’t want to admit it but they think it’s highly likely or possible if the right way is taken, the right strategy employed here. Yeah, we can’t repeal it with one piece of legislation. But you can make them defend it. You can make them defend it often. In the face of public approval falling like a rock for this thing, you make them come out and tell us why we’re wrong; you make every administration official go out and publicly tell us why we’re wrong, why this is great for us, why losing our liberty is a good thing. I want to hear them be able to sell that.