Justices Doubt Obamacare Mandate a Tax

John Tabin
The American Spectator
3/26/2012

Oral arguments for day one of the Obamacare lawsuits have ended; the subject of today’s argument was whether the individual mandate counts as a tax for the purposes of the Anti-Injunction Act. If it does, the Court can’t rule on its constitutionality until the mandate goes into effect in three years. Neither the Obama administration nor the parties challenging the law believe that the Anti-Injunction Act applies, but a lower court ruled that it does, so the Supreme Court assigned a lawyer to argue for that position. Reporters who were there say that the questions suggest that we’ll get a substantive ruling one way or another this year.

From the right, Phil Klein tweets: “Oral args over. No merits today, but justices seemed broadly skeptical of idea that mandate is a tax.”

And: “Ginsburg: ‘this can’t be a rev raising measure, bc if it’s successful, there won’t be any rev raised.'”

And: “Breyer: ‘they called it a penalty and not a tax for a reason.'”

And: “But Roberts skeptical that mandate can be separated from penalty: ‘Why would u have a requirement that is completely toothless?'”

From the left, Jonathan Cohn has a similar reaction: “SCOTUS oral arguments over. Insta-rxn: Justices seemed skeptical of tax argument, and argument that anti-injunction act should block case…”

And: “Breyer, Ginsburg were among those asking tough questions about why mandate penalty counts as a tax”

We shouldn’t read too much into the Justices’ questions — they aren’t always predictive of the ruling — but the commentary does suggest that they’re leaning strongly against the Anti-Injunction Act argument, as both sides urged…

The article continues at The American Spectator.

RelatedCongressmen Ryan, Johnson Comment on ObamaCare Court Fight

This weekend, Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI 01) and Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) spoke to the Maciver News Service regarding this weeks’ Supreme Court arguments regarding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), otherwise known as ObamaCare.

Also, Jay Sekulow on Fox News: Day 1 of ObamaCare Oral Arguments

Jay Sekulow appeared on Fox News with Megyn Kelly to discuss the first day of oral arguments before the Supreme Court in ObamaCare. The Justices appear ready to decide ObamaCare on the merits as opposed to further delaying the case.

Update: Alito, Breyer Call Out Obama Lawyer For Dubbing Mandate Both A ‘Penalty’ And ‘Tax’

Andrew Breitbart Lives, at Supreme Court Obamacare Protest

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