Arguments On Obamacare Conclude, SCOTUS Decision Due By Late June

Tyler Durden's picture


The deliberations on Obamacare have ended. The next catalyst will be late June, when the Supreme Court is expected to rule on whether Obamacare is constitutional or not. If overturned, expect lots of fingerpointing, and even more allegations that it is all Bush's fault, especially if the vote goes down according to party lines.

From Reuters:

The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday ended more than six hours of oral arguments over three days about whether President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law would survive constitutional scrutiny, setting up to deliver a ruling on its fate by late June.


Over the past three days, the nine-member court delved into whether Congress exceeded its authority by requiring most Americans to obtain health insurance by 2014 or face a penalty, along with whether the entire wide-ranging law must be struck down if they found that critical provision to be invalid.

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Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:39 | 2298065 dwdollar
dwdollar's picture

Great!!! Three months for the insiders to score!

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:46 | 2298097 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

SCOTUS is merely playing its role in the two-party paradigm; highlight an alleged difference between "democrats" and "republicans" in order to make the masses believe they have a choice in November and that elections actually matter.

Fewer and fewer are fooled by this each year.  This is the reason for the accelerating police state.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 16:11 | 2298415 Nothing To See Here
Nothing To See Here's picture

You are right. And most of all, we can all make wild guesses about which cases the "conservative" judges will concede to side with the "liberal" judges if the latter ones agree to vote against Obamacare.

Scratch my back and I'll scratch yours, that's how it always worked.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 22:33 | 2299427 StychoKiller
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During an Obamacare litigation hearing this week, Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge James L. Graham asked acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal, "Where ultimately is the limit on Congressional power?"  The question sounds rhetorical but is not.  The administration argues that Congress has Constitutional authority under the Article I Section 8 "commerce clause" to compel uninsured Americans to purchase health care insurance.

The logic goes back to the 1942 Supreme Court case "Wickard v. Filburn" in which Ohio farmer Roscoe Filburn was fined for growing wheat in excess of New Deal--era crop quotas. Mr. Filburn argued that the quotas did not apply to his particular circumstances because he was growing feed for his own chickens, not to sell.  But the Supreme Court disagreed, stating that "control of total supply... depends upon control of individual supply," and by growing his own chicken feed, Mr. Filburn was not buying it from others.  Also New Deal agricultural programs were so effective, according to the court, that Mr. Filburn should stop complaining about impositions on his freedom and show a little gratitude.

The Obama administration takes this pernicious logic a step further by compelling people to buy things they don't want.  Since there is no interstate commerce to regulate, the government mandates it. But Judge Graham's question can be answered by employing the same argument that Chief Justice John Marshall employed in the foundational case of Marbury v. Madison (1803).  If Congress can exercise powers that are in practice unlimited, then as Justice Marshall concluded, "written constitutions are absurd attempts, on the part of the people, to limit a power in its own nature illimitable." It is "a proposition too plain to be contested" that the Constitution cannot be used to justify an act that destroys the very limits on which constitutional government is founded.

In essence, Obamacare must be unconstitutional, because if it stands it would remove the limits to Congressional power that the Constitution was designed to impose.  The Constitution is not a suicide pact even if Obamacare is.


Thu, 03/29/2012 - 05:33 | 2299906 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



SCOTUS hits the mother of all reset buttons.


This whole Constitution crap may actually work after all.


Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:39 | 2298067 pashley1411
pashley1411's picture

Next up in Congress, buy-yer-own-shackles.    And butt-plug.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:43 | 2298068 HD
HD's picture


Just as dirty as they sound.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:00 | 2298172 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

You forgot TOTUS and CLITORIS.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:06 | 2298195 HD
HD's picture

"You forgot TOTUS and CLITORIS"

I mentioned Barry...but you're right, I forgot about Ben.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:23 | 2298242 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

Gee, I thought you meant Madame Hillary.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 16:41 | 2298543 economics9698
economics9698's picture

Twisted fuckers. 

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 02:29 | 2299777 Problem Is
Problem Is's picture

No one said CUNTUS...

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 06:15 | 2299940 Gavrikon
Gavrikon's picture

Why?  Hillary has (is) a dick.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:31 | 2298278 GOSPLAN HERO
GOSPLAN HERO's picture

Is Bill Clinton the SCROTUMUS?

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 06:16 | 2299941 Gavrikon
Gavrikon's picture

That's COITUS.  The I stands for Infidelity, BTW.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:12 | 2298211 Yardfarmer
Yardfarmer's picture


Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:51 | 2298345 citta vritti
citta vritti's picture

all fall down

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 19:51 | 2299113 UP Forester
UP Forester's picture

Good book by Vonnegut.

Just remember, the gov't will lock you up for the mere illusion of impropriety, unless you're connected.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:51 | 2298069 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

I doubt it will be struck down probably parts of it will be removed or it will be sent back to the lower courts. If by chance it did Obummer will lose it and there is no telling what  the megalomaniac will do.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:40 | 2298070 besodemuerte
besodemuerte's picture

Completely ridiculous if it's not ruled unconstitutional.  Either way this is probably bullish for the market.  

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 16:07 | 2298393 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture


Completely ridiculous if it's not ruled unconstitutional. 

I believe the only issue before the court is mandated purchase of medical insurance. 

If that part is struck down, medical insurance companies are gonna go bankrupt carrying out the other mandates in Obamacare like covering all pre-existing conditions, etc.

I believe it was set up that way.  I believe they knew mandated purchase would be struck down and insurance companies would have to implement the rest of it without that flood of money coming in, forcing them to beg for government help, allowing Obama to nationalize the medical system. 

And no, it's not "healthcare".  They don't know a damn thing about health.


Wed, 03/28/2012 - 16:15 | 2298437 WTF_247
WTF_247's picture

Since there is no severability clause in the law, odds are decent they will move to strike down the whole law if part of it is found unconstitutional.  Many, many laws passed by congress include a severability provision - this one does not.  I would guess that SCOTUS would not try to interpret what "Congress meant" vs looking at what they passed - that would set a very big precedent.

There is nothing preventing Congress from rewriting portions of the law, enacting a tax to pay for it and re-passing it - which is what the Court is likely to argue in its ruling.  However, Congress knows that it would be next to impossible now coming up on election year.

Everyone agrees that going the way it is with healthcare will not last long - at 9% growth per year in costs at some point in the not so distant future the whole thing will collapse on itself.  

Rather than focus on the root cause of the cost increases, they chose to try to chuck more money and bodies at it which will not work.  No diff than issuing more debt to solve a debt problem.  Well, short term it might but we all know how it will end ...

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 16:36 | 2298492 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture



I would love to see the whole thing struck down, but it's not SCOTUS tradition to rule in such a broad manner.  They'll likely rule just on the mandated purchase issue since that's the only constitutional issue, and simply not address the rest of it.  That's how SCOTUS typically operates, very focused on one issue.

Like I said above, I believe the real goal of Obamacare is nationalize the medical system.  The mandated purchase thing is a trojan horse put in specifically to fool insurance companies into supporting and fool congress into passing what essentially is a medical system nationalization act.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 02:19 | 2299761 Fox Moulder
Fox Moulder's picture

I agree, I've been saying the same thing since it was passed.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 05:56 | 2299923 r00t61
r00t61's picture

"Fool" insurance companies?

The lobbyists for the insurance industry WROTE this bill, for crying out loud!

There's no way that every line of this 2,500 page monstrosity wasn't created and vetted by lobbyist lawyers. Just look at the tangled web of the health-care-industrial complex that spawned the bill:

The real goal of Obamacare is not some sinister plot to nationalize the health care system.  Obamacare is simply stealth corporate welfare for the health insurance industry.  In return for having to do things like cover pre-existing conditions and nominally reduce the cost of certain basic services, it literally makes every citizen in the nation a captive buyer. You can bet that the insurance companies had their actuaries crunch the cost/benefit-analysis numbers in monstrous excel spreadsheets to determine that they would make even more money, which is why they pushed this law.


Wed, 03/28/2012 - 17:13 | 2298619 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

"Everyone agrees that going the way it is with healthcare will not last long - at 9% growth per year in costs at some point in the not so distant future the whole thing will collapse on itself."

Not if Ben Bernanke maintains the keys to the printing press...the charade will -somehow- find new life or a way to prolong the inevitable into a future generation.




Wed, 03/28/2012 - 18:04 | 2298838 Dermasolarapate...
Dermasolarapaterraphatrima's picture

Obamacare is really a tax law, not a health care law.

Thu, 03/29/2012 - 02:33 | 2299781 Problem Is
Problem Is's picture

Soetoro-care is really a WELFARE program for the corporate health insurance industry...

No more no less....

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 18:34 | 2298933 jpmrwb
jpmrwb's picture

There is a big difference in the make-up of the congress as it stands now. The democrats will have an almost impossible task to come up with another boondoggle. They couldn't come up with 60 votes in the senate and the house would just laugh at them.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 22:38 | 2299439 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

[quote]Rather than focus on the root cause of the cost increases, they chose to try to chuck more money and bodies at it which will not work.[/quote]

Blast it ALL, it's really simple to find the root cause:  The US Govt is SUBSIDIZING sick people; when you SUBSIDIZE something, you get MORE OF IT!

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 23:20 | 2299529 icanhasbailout
icanhasbailout's picture

I think that if they toss it, they pretty much have to toss it all, because there's no way in hell they're going to do the legal analysis of a 2700 page catalogue of corruption to try to figure out what if anything remaining is legit.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:42 | 2298074 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Didn't Obama study constitutional law at Harvard?

He must have failed the part of the curricula having to do with the constitution.

The government can't force you to buy a product or service. It' pretty fucking straightforward.

Maybe he's using the Kenyan constitution or something.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:45 | 2298095 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

He allegedly taught Constitutional Law at the University of Chicago. Although, as it turns out, that was a farce, just like everything else about Obama.

" published Obama's University of Chicago "Constitutional Law" course syllabus a couple of weeks ago.


Guys, Obama didn't even write his own syllabus. The prose is sophisticated, the grammar is flawless, and the punctuation is good - heck, there are several semicolons used, and used correctly. In other words, the syllabus is everything that every other sample of genuine Obama-written prose is not. It isn't the same voice. It isn't the same author. Period.

Every sample of genuine Obama-written prose in existence is HORRIFIC in terms of prose, grammar and punctuation. Agonizingly horrific. Please see Jack Cashill's body of work, including several new pieces at .

Look at the course structure itself. Obama only had to bluff his way through four actual class periods, with most of those class periods consisting of student discussion. Students were explicitly graded on their participation in these four class sessions. The other six sessions were "small group project" presentations by the students. Obama wouldn't have to say or do anything in those class periods except play the part of the "wise professor." Total scammage.

I think Obama was (and is) so stupid, and such a fraud that he had to have someone else prepare his course for him, including what little bit of lecture he delivered in those four class sessions.

Who might have prepared a course syllabus and light lecture notes on constitutional race issues with an emphasis toward education and race?

Bernardine Dohrn. As in Bill Ayers' wife.

Bernardine Dohrn was a paralegal at the Chicago law firm of Sidley Austin from 1984-1988, and, as an aside, was very likely acquainted with Michelle Robinson (later Obama) when Michelle summer interned at Sidley Austin while she was in law school and was later hired right out of Harvard Law in 1988. The dates match exactly. Barry was hired as a summer associate by Sidley Austin in 1989 while he was still in law school. That is allegedly how he and Michelle met. Since both Barry and Michelle are affirmative action frauds and put together don't have the brains God gave a goldfish, neither one lasted long in an actual performance environment, and have only ever held non-performing meaningless crony positions.

The reason Dohrn was a paralegal and not an attorney is only because she was a convicted felon per her terrorism activities with the Weather Underground back in the 1960s and 1970s. Dohrn was fully capable of passing the bar, and was working as a de facto attorney at Sidley Austin, just under the necessary title "paralegal" due to her criminal past.

So, here we have yet another possible connection between Bill Ayers-Bernardine Dohrn and both of the Obamas. But back to the syllabus.

We now know that Bill Ayers' parents put Obama through Harvard, thanks to Allen Hulton's testimony. The Ayers also knew that Obama was a lightweight intellectually who needed as much help with his academic tasks as he needed with his finances. Now Obama had been hired at the prestigious University of Chicago law school as an adjunct and had to actually teach a class - and appear credible. So, roll in the Ayers-Dohrn machine to the rescue. Just like the way that Ayers came to the rescue and wrote "Dreams From My Father" for Barry.

Lawyer-in-all-but-name Bernardine Dohrn puts together a curriculum including lecture notes, and even writes the syllabus for Obama (as evidenced by the excellent prose, grammar and punctuation). All she needs to do is give Obama a few rhetorical platforms per class session (of which there were only FOUR) upon which he can then launch "class discussion." Dohrn could have put this together in just a few hours. In class, Barry kicks back, fakes the role of all-wise "professor", and cruises while the students in the class basically teach themselves.

It should be mentioned that Dohrn has been a law professor since 1991, and focuses on race and juvenile/education issues. Which is pretty much exactly the focus of Obama's course syllabus.

Oh, and Bill Ayers has a Ed.D. in "Curriculum and Instruction." As in, putting together curricula.

Just sayin'"

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:50 | 2298120 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Maybe he was smoking crack when it was time to start reading the constitution.

He admitted smoking crack.

What a great President. Good job America, you're a bunch of fucking morons.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:45 | 2298323 Charles Wilson
Charles Wilson's picture

The people must be more stupid than the people they elect.  If the politicians  were more stupid than the people, it would prove just how much more stupid the people were than the politicians who were elected.  (Slightly paraphrased)


Bertrand Russell



Wed, 03/28/2012 - 16:09 | 2298404 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

The best argument against democracy is a conversation with the average voter.

-Winston Churchill

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 17:16 | 2298637 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

It is time for going back to landowners being the only legal voters?

Just asking...

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 17:56 | 2298800 Desert Cat
Desert Cat's picture

Then along comes Agenda 21 to disfranchise us all...

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 18:41 | 2298957 dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

Remember the Kulaks!!

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 22:47 | 2299464 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

How is it that people are too dumb to fend for themselves, yet so intelligent that they can vote for the right person to fend for everyone else?

Wishing the government to be a great protector and benefactor does not make it so.  It is not difficult to find evidence that it is anything but.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 16:15 | 2298435 Nothing To See Here
Nothing To See Here's picture

Well, the most important skill of the politicians in a modern democracy is to keep the masses dumb down. American Idol and CNN do have a purpose, yes.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:09 | 2298184 Bob
Bob's picture

I wouldn't have been surprised, but I just had to see it myself.

This is an often-cited example of Barry's incompetent writing while a Harvard student.  I was hoping to find exactly what others claim to find so obvious, but it just ain't there.  Except for a few typos (missing letters from three or four words), the grammatical sophistication and narrative voice are exactly what I've come to cynically know as "Barry."

IMO, the guy has an obvious gift for language that is easy to see in his speeches and other oral remarks (teleprompter notwithstanding.)  This explains his otherwise incomprehensible command of "black English" with the ease of a native speaker, in spite of growing up completely apart from all natural African-American influences.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:28 | 2298259 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

Go ahead, man up and say what more than a few are thinking: America has had more than a few "legacy" Presidents (to wit GWB), but this is America's first Affirmative Action President ....

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 18:46 | 2298969 IrritableBowels
IrritableBowels's picture

@ buckaroo banzai

Much thanks for the info...god I love ZH.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:21 | 2298235 salvadordaly
salvadordaly's picture

He had to pass the bill to find out what was in it! What I don't get is that Democrat, Republican matters what????  Are they not to rule on the constitution? Or have I have terribly missed something? Go ahead hit me with it,  in 3,2,1......

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:41 | 2298075 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

Does it even matter what they decide? FedGov is so deeply involved in every aspect of healthcare now, that the trend is probably impossible to reverse short of total system collapse. Medicare, Medicaid, and all the other giant federal programs have so badly distorted free market healthcare economics that it is pretty much a hopeless situation.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 15:15 | 2298222 MinnesotaMD
MinnesotaMD's picture

It matters because every social program the govt created and oversees is a financial failure. They are dependent on more and more younger people subsidizing a few. Oh, and they want to abort and prevent births with contraception coverage. The sooner the Ponzi logic gets revealed the better; either by changing course because we have discovered individual liberty, or by financial default because we failed to correct course.

Let's hope it is the former and that there is a rebirth of American liberty. The latter is the SHTF if it already hasn't done so. Where else can one go for freedom in the modern world? We used to be Galt's Gulch.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 16:32 | 2298513 MrBinkeyWhat
MrBinkeyWhat's picture

Last time I checked it had moved to Argentenia.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:41 | 2298076 chubbar
chubbar's picture

Kagan wouldn't recuse herself even though she was solicitor general and ass deep in the administrations efforts to get Obama care passed. You can bet your bottom dollar this goes party line even though it's a no brainer, unconstitutional mandate.

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 14:46 | 2298102 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Kagan is a raging bull dike.

I bet if she put her dick away from a while she'd enjoy life a little more.

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