Yesterday U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson struck down the individual mandate provision of the health care reform legislation passed by Democrats and signed into law by President Barack Obama. The mandate would have required Americans to purchase health insurance by 2014 or face a penalty.
Here’s some of what Hudson wrote in his decision striking down the individual mandate provision of health care reform:
“An individual’s personal decision to purchase — or decline purchase — (of) health insurance from a private provider is beyond the historical reach of the U.S. Constitution,” Hudson wrote, also stating that “no specifically articulated constitutional authority exists to mandate the purchase of health insurance.”
“Despite the laudable intentions of Congress in enacting a comprehensive and transformative health care regime, the legislative process must still operate within constitutional bounds,” Hudson added. “Salutatory goals and creative drafting have never been sufficient to offset an absence of enumerated powers.”
Though I’m not as versed in the law as some in the Cheddarsphere, I wasn’t at all surprised that the individual mandate provision of health care reform was ruled unconstitutional, and I’m willing to bet Judge Hudson’s decision won’t be the last ruling against the individual mandate provision. Judge Hudson’s decision will be appealed by the federal government and the issue is likely to end up before the U.S. Supreme Court at some point, but it seems pretty clear that the individual mandate provision will be struck down by the SCOTUS.