The Constitution of the United States creates a national government of enumerated and therefore limited powers. Accordingly, troubled members of the Court should be applauded for their efforts to search for the limits to any principle advanced to uphold the health care mandate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), not made the target of strident and caustic criticism. The Court is a great institution, and its members don’t deserve such abuse.
That should be said, and I want to say it as clearly as I can. Nonetheless, I submit that sustaining the mandate would not give rise to the justices’ fears of boundless federal authority.
The individual health mandate surely passes constitutional muster under settled judicial principles. The Constitution’s Commerce Clause grants Congress the authority “to regulate commerce ... among the several States.”