Supreme Court to Ninth Circuit, President Obama: No, the Government Allowing You to Keep Your Own Money is Not the Same as Spending

Aaron Worthing
Patterico’s Pontifications

You might remember a statement from Obama that I labeled this The Most Offensive Line in the State of the Union:

The bipartisan Fiscal Commission I created last year made this crystal clear. I don’t agree with all their proposals, but they made important progress. And their conclusion is that the only way to tackle our deficit is to cut excessive spending wherever we find it – in domestic spending, defense spending, health care spending, and spending through tax breaks and loopholes.

(emphasis added.)  And I had this reaction at the time:

You got that?  When you are allowed to keep your money, that is considered “spending” by the Federal Government.  Because in reality all of the fruits of your labor belong to us, the government.

And prior to that the Ninth Circuit tried to codify this principle into law in Arizona Christian School Tuition Organization v. Winn.  I ignored the “all your money is belong to us” angle to the story, but Althouse dragged it out a bit, asking “[i]f the government gives tax credits for donations that may go to religion, is that essentially the same as government spending on religion.”  I, on the other hand, pointed out that even if Judge Reinhardt and the 9th Circuit were right on that question (big if), and we treat this as a government expenditure, it’s still basically the same issue as a voucher, which has already been declared constitutional.

Well, today the Supreme Court announced its decision in that case and interestingly enough, they kept the issue to standing only and specifically stated that allowing people to keep more of their own money in taxes is not the same as spending…

The article continues at Patterico’s Pontifications.

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