Justice Roberts: not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices
“The mandate's unconstitutional, but the court has decided it's a tax, and therefore it's okay. So Obamacare is nothing more than the largest tax increase in the history of the world. The chief justice of the United States Supreme Court, John Roberts, said, 'It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices.' What are your thoughts on Justice Roberts' comment?
That is true. It is the Court's job to make sure Congress (not the President, btw) didn't step outside the bounderies set by the Constitution. Since the tax argument was one of the three made by the government, he found the individual mandate to be not that much different than Social Security and Medicare (much larger taxes then this, btw again, since those cover everybody and this one only cover a small portion of society ... those irresponsible enough to let others pay for their healthcare), so his Conservative pricipals caused him to not to be an activist Jurist, unlike is political kindred who voted no.
He was forced to accept a program he probably didn't like because he was doing his job as a judge and letting the Congress and the People do their jobs as defined in the Constitution. If, the government had not made taxes as one of their arguments, I suspect he would have voted no.
I read the syllabus of the opinion had it changed my mind about the efficacy of the Commerce Clause argument, it clearly doesn't hold under his reasoning. I am still studying the Necessary and Proper Clause argument.
The United States Supreme Court's job is to interpret whether laws that are enacted by Congress (some via Presidential signature and others via override) are constitutional per the United States Constitution and their interpretation of the Constitution, so Chief Justice Robert's statement that you cited is correct.
Roberts never really stated that the mandate was "unconstitutional" that I saw...I heard him state that the Court did not feel a mandate was within the powers of Congress under the Commerce Clause thus the charges levied were looked upon as a "taxation" which came under the powers of Congress. Roberts used his explanation to shield the blatant fact that the Court, in this case, failed to protect the Constitution in the ruling and, at the same time, threw the doors wide open for this case to become a landmark decision in the consideration of other cases which seek to undermine the Constitution and limit the rights of the people. The Affordable Healthcare legislation which became law was never truly vetted or debated by those elected to present us in the Congress...had it been and the findings of the court made apparent, some who voted for this bill in a back room on Saturday night might have voted differently. A few in the Congress may lose their seat over this outcome in the next election but the real loser here was the American people thanks to the actions of the SCOTUS. WB
Yes and no. He was very clear that using the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clauses of Article 1 were stretched beyond the Founders intentions on limits on Congress. But, he did not find that true in the argument that Congress can tax
Instead, it is Roberts' job to protect the Constitution. I don't get why he did not do that with the health care law as written, as an individual mandate. Why not just declare it unconstitutional according to the Commerce clause? I do not think it was his job to rewrite the health care law as a tax.
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