Continually throughout the Health Care debate, if you want to call it that, Democrats insisted that the “penalty” (as described by the language of the bill) was NOT a tax. The pResident emphasized this very point while being interviewed by ABC’s Stephanopoulos.
A short cut from the interview:
STEPHANOPOULOS: I wanted to check for myself. But your critics say it is a tax increase.
OBAMA: My critics say everything is a tax increase. My critics say that I’m taking over every sector of the economy. You know that. Look, we can have a legitimate debate about whether or not we’re going to have an individual mandate or not, but…
STEPHANOPOULOS: But you reject that it’s a tax increase?
OBAMA: I absolutely reject that notion. (emphasis mine)
Now the first suit by Virginia is being heard in court. Virginia has filed suit arguing that the federal government with the health care reform law is making a power grab beyond what the United States Constitution allows. Basically the state is saying the same thing many of us have said, no where does the federal government have the power to mandate that any citizen purchase a particular commodity.
Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli outlined his basic argument to NPR earlier in the year. “It is our position that the individual mandate is unconstitutionally overbroad under the Commerce Clause,” Cuccinelli, a Republican, said. “You cannot compel someone to buy something from someone else.” As you will recall, nearly every American will be required to purchase health insurance. This will be important for keeping down the ever rising price of health care in this country, according to the Obama Administration.
Commerce clause you say? Wait one minute, the Obama administration is now arguing that they (the federal government) have a Constitutional “power to lay and collect taxes.” However in reading the bill, no where did legislators state the levy as a tax, they continually referred to it as a “penalty.”
Oh yes but the administration is saying that since the law will raise an estimated $4 billion a year, according to the Congressional Budget Office, the “penalty” is a tax. Plus we have the pesky IRS enforcement aspect of the bill.. exactly what does the IRS collect?
Florida, as well as other states have stated: “Congress is attempting to regulate and penalize Americans for choosing not to engage in economic activity. If Congress can do this much, there will be virtually no sphere of private decision-making beyond the reach of federal power.”
As these suits proceed forward, lets remember that sixty percent (60%) of voters nationwide favor repeal the passed health care law, including 49% who Strongly Favor repeal. How will these individuals feel once they learn, the “penalty” is really a tax and that the pResident lied to them all-along? Lets get this information out.. IF your congress critters hold townhalls this summer ask them why the pResident explicitedly stated the “penalty” was not a tax and is now arguing in court that it is. As Representative Joe Wilson stated in the face of outright disdain from the pResident over his blatant lack of honesty…