Partisanship in SCOTUS health care controversy?
Debate continues over power of court
- Duration 6:37
- Date Apr 5, 2012
Debate continues over power of court
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We are all waiting right now -- Justice Department letter explaining where the Obama administration comes down on the issue of judges.
Having that having the power to overturn federal legislation.
The deadline for that letter to arrive now ninety minutes away we are also awaiting the daily briefing from the white house Press Secretary Jay Carney.
He is expected to address that controversial topic shortly.
As you probably know recent comments from President Obama suggested.
That he believes Supreme Court justices deciding the fate of the health care law.
Should take into account the decision already made by congress the president basically said it would be wrong of the justices of the Supreme Court to overturn it.
Let's talk about it with -- -- Heiser a policy analyst and blogger who focuses on the constitution and the -- judiciary for the Center for American Progress.
-- Levy is executive director of the committee for justice and both of them served as law clerks for the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Even you don't think much of what this judge in the fifth circuit.
Asked the Justice Department to do walk.
I don't think very much of -- at all you know.
This judge did not go after George Bush when he said over and over again that activist judges are thwarting the will of the people.
He go after Mitt Romney when Mitt Romney said a few months ago that unelected judges are thwarting the will of the people but when a democratic president.
Says the exact same thing that bush and Romney is -- suddenly this judge has a problem with it.
That is in Q how judges -- this is partisanship on the part of the judiciary.
And it's not appropriate at all.
For judges to weigh in to political disputes this what.
But wait a minute didn't didn't he essentially challenged the president when the president said that the Supreme Court should not overturn health care law because you know it that the court doesn't have the power and -- essentially what -- was challenging.
The court doesn't have the power to overturn the Affordable Care Act the -- She should says that congress can regulate commerce.
The Affordable Care Act is -- regulation of won six of the nation's economy the court can overturn many things if they are actually unconstitutional.
But the only thing that the court has the power to do.
Is to follow the text of the constitution of the United States striking down the Affordable Care Act is not within the judiciary is power -- you seemed to disagree.
Well you know it's wonderful to hear liberals.
Suddenly saying that the court should follow the text of the constitution.
Because of course during my entire life they've always said they believe -- -- living constitution which is that.
Judges should change the constitution.
To help but evolve that they should invent your right so first of all I'm I'm happy to hear this -- -- But of course I'm mr.
-- -- I hope I'm pronouncing that correctly.
Just repeated the same mistake that the president made which is to say that.
No court cannot overturn this it it's fine for him -- the president to say that they believe it's constitutional.
But to say they can't overturn it.
Is to say.
It they'd make the decision I don't like they're wrong they're acting outside of their authority.
And that's exactly the violation of separation of powers that that Obama got in trouble for -- and somewhat back.
Track from the next day and I expect the Justice Department will will backtrack further and -- the document the releasing this afternoon.
The end you suggested that this is essentially a conservative.
Making sort of a Republican Democrat argument but isn't it more -- judiciary -- executive branch argument.
No it's not you know I don't normally use the words I'm about to use but I agree with Rush Limbaugh.
Limbaugh said on his show yesterday the reason why the judge did this is because he's trying to help defeat the president.
And Limbaugh is right here that is the reason that's the only reason why the judge would weigh into a political dispute like this.
I wanna push back the -- -- thing that cart has said.
It seemed really.
To say that judges have the power to strike down balls regardless.
Of what the constitution -- my positions very clear.
My position is that judges are bound by the constitution.
And they are powerless to strike down the Affordable Care Act.
Because of the constitution.
Clearly says that it is acceptable.
Well I guess very new position coming from -- they've all been -- judges can -- the constitution.
But you don't have to -- -- here because obamacare is illegal under any reading of the commerce clause.
If that's what they argued about in the Supreme Court and the solicitor general you know a lot of people thought did not make very good arguments -- And there's a reason because you cannot get around the fact that if obamacare is constitutional.
If you expand the commerce -- enough to do that.
Then there are no limits on congressional power and that's in the senate -- and I thought -- new -- Intel -- constitution I'll -- American people want.
Regulate commerce that means noneconomic.
Laws murder laws truancy laws -- -- assault -- all kinds of laws that congress can pass.
They can regulate the economy that's what the words regulate commerce means and in this country.
Either judges follow the constitution or there'll be no limits on what so -- -- the question -- -- about creating commerce so that congress can regulate it forcing everybody into the individual mandate.
-- we have an entire existing -- on health care market all that this does it say that how that market should function this is regulating existing -- Well except that people look don't want to buy insurance are forced to buy insurance that's the different I guess we're wandering a little bit in deal arguing over again what the Supreme Court has already heard we're trying to focus in this segment on what the president said about the Supreme Court.
The -- what about that you know that that hasn't the Supreme Court already.
-- in fairly recent history overturned rulings of congress that it found to be on come.
Additional yes it did and under the commerce clause it did so in 95.
The gun free school zones act and then -- about the year 2000.
Part of the violence against women act so when the president also said.
The other day that it would be unprecedented for the court.
To strike down obamacare he was wrong about that -- they've done it twice recently and this would be very consistent with those decisions so.
It was just demagoguing the president was was doing he was not he knows constitutional law better than Eilat on on Monday that's for sure.
-- -- is with the Committee for Justice -- -- -- is with the Center for American Progress good discussion it's going to be interesting to see what the Justice Department says in that letter today.
Gentlemen thank you don't.