Skip to comments.Chief Justice Says Following Constitution Not Important
Posted on 07/10/2012 1:27:09 PM PDT by kathsua
Chief Justice John Roberts says in his opinion that the Interstate Commerce clause doesn't authorize the mandatory health insurance provision of Obamacare but that following the Constitution isn't important so long as the Chief Justice is in political agreement with what Congress wants a law to do.
Chief Justice Roberts has apparently forgotten that the Supreme Court's only authority to act is as a legal body. It is not a super house of Congress with the authority to correct what individual justices believe are errors in acts of Congress. The Court is supposed to base its actions on the Constitution rather than on the personal political opinions of the Justices. It is not the role of the Court to determine if a given act of Congress is desirable or not. That is the role of government officials who are elected by the people.
If a majority of the Justices believe the individual mandate isn't authorized by the commerce clause upon which the law is based, then any requirement for insurance purchases is unconstitutional. It doesn't matter if Congress could have made the requirement under another provision of the Constitution. If Congress calls a charge a "penalty" then the Court can only consider whether or not that penalty is in accord with the Constitution. The Chief Justice cannot change the word penalty to the word "tax" to make the law valid.
The only authority the Court has is to send a measure back to Congress so Congress can decide whether to correct what the Court considers to be an error. The Chief Justice cannot say in effect "you little boys and girls in Congress should have called this penalty a tax, so I'll change it to a tax for you." Congress might not want to call the charge a tax because voters wouldn't accept the charge as a tax.
Justices who believe criminals should be prosecuted will nevertheless overturn a conviction if the government used illegal means to obtain a conviction. The Court doesn't say "well the defendant is guilty and the trial court could have convicted him without using illegally obtained evidence so we'll let the conviction stand." The Supreme Court tells the trial court to retry the case without the illegally obtained evidence
The Court must take the same approach when ruling on the constitutionality of legislation. If the legislation is not based on an appropriate provision of the Constitution, then the justices must find the legislation unconstitutional regardless of their personal opinions --- that is if they want people to believe they are motivated by protecting the Constitution rather than on furthering their political beliefs.
Lifetime tenure for Supreme Court Justices may be justifiable if they at least go through the motions of basing their rulings on what the Constitution authorizes. They need to write some legal smokescreen that make it appear their rulings are based on the Constitution. If the Chief Justice or other Justices are going to say in their opinions that their political beliefs are more important than what the Constitution authorizes, then American voters must have the opportunity to determine who serves on the Supreme Court.
With term limits.
The question is whether doing so would make any difference.
After all, look who we have in elected positions today.
WRONG! WRONG! WRONG! But until the congress is willing to exercise it's authority and punish wrong doers like this it will come to nothing!
I’m curious what morning Roberts woke up to find a horse head in his bed.
You're right, he can't.
And he didn't.
In his ruling, Roberts quoted Obamacare itself, at Title 26, § 5000A (g) (1), which reads:
The penalty provided by this section ... shall be assessed and collected in the same manner as an assessable penalty under subchapter B of chapter 68.
Then Roberts did this amazing, totally judicial thing that no one else can possibly do except someone with his vast power at their fingertips - he actually looked up the law that Obamacare quoted. And when he did, he found that subchapter B of chapter 68, specifically at § 6671 (a), says:
The penalties and liabilities provided by this subchapter shall be ... assessed and collected in the same manner as taxes. ...any reference in this title to "tax" imposed by this title shall be deemed also to refer to the penalties and liabilities provided by this subchapter.
Then, after reading these actual laws cited by Obamacare itself, Roberts made this blockbuster observation: "The requirement to pay is found in the Internal Revenue Code and enforced by the IRS, which-as we previously explained-must assess and collect it "in the same manner as taxes."
Let's see, Roberts said the penalty must be assessed and collected "in the same manner as taxes" after reading that Obamacare itself invokes § 6671 (a) - which literally and specifically states the penalty must be assessed and collected "in the same manner as taxes."
Wow, that's a radical ruling.
And what exactly is § 6671 (a)? It a part of the Internal Revenue Code that was there before Obamacare was even created! All Obamacare did was point to it, and say "use that."
So why weren't Americans enraged about how § 6671 (a) equates the treatment of penalties as taxes before Obamacare?
People can disagree with him if they want, but how the hell can anyone say Roberts is "legislating from the bench" when he simply repeats back pre-existing tax law that Obamacare references for itself? Of course, the answer to that question is simple - no one actually looked up the laws before they decided that their country had been "destroyed." Yet they're ready to fight a "revolution" over it!
A revolution for what - to make new laws that they still won't read?
If you want to get angry, get angry about how the other eight Justices didn't point out this simple fact about penalties already being treated as taxes. After all, that's what judges are supposed to do - right? Point out what the law is, rather than what anyone wants it to be? Right? And isn't that exactly what the Chief Justice did here?
Maybe that's why he's Chief Justice - he gets to read the actual laws. Maybe all the other Justices have to listen to the media to find out how they should rule.
Our law schools are churning out feces by the ton. Conservative lawyers and judges are getting very scarce. It is what it is. Twilight’s last gleaming.
We are not a Democracy.
It’s obviously time to adjust the Chief Justice’s meds!!
Townhall mag/website itself is not concerned with the Constitution being followed either, so who are they to act offended. They actively censor the eligibility issue and are as responsible for Obama as anyone since they are complicit in the fraud.
Because that is EXACTLY what the majority did in this case despite your very hair splitting protestations to the contrary! As the referenced article says "If a majority of the Justices believe the individual mandate isn't authorized by the commerce clause upon which the law is based, then any requirement for insurance purchases is unconstitutional. It doesn't matter if Congress could have made the requirement under another provision of the Constitution. If Congress calls a charge a "penalty" then the Court can only consider whether or not that penalty is in accord with the Constitution. The Chief Justice cannot change the word penalty to the word "tax" to make the law valid."
Romney is likely a Roberts Republican.
OK. Roberts has gone off his nut. This guy needs to be put back in the private sector. The problem is that Obama would choose his replacement. The fact about that would be that he would probably choose Roberts.
I agree it’s time to vote to determine who serves on the Supreme Court.
John Roberts would have been voted in. He was loved as the pick by GW especially from FREEPERS. I had some doubt and mentioned them and of course called a troll, but people thought he was a great pick at the time. I have no doubt that he would have been voted in by Republicans for sure.
Consider becoming a monthly donor.
It's easy, and with enough participants
we could eliminate FReepathons.
Congress knowingly left a severability provision out of the Act. Roberts should know better unless he was in collusion with Zer0, Pelosi and Reid.
You shouldn’t worry however since apparently there isn’t anyone currently in congress with the stomach to take on the out of control judiciary.
That clear principle carries the day here."
Roberts goes against the Constitution and the will of the People.