Today the U.S. House of Representatives is holding a hearing on “The Original Meaning of the Constitution’s Origination Clause.”
Article 1, Section 7, of the Constitution provides that, “All Bills for raising revenue shall Originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.”
Georgetown University Law professor Randy Barnett recently wrote in a Washington Post blog
: “Revenue bills ‘shall’ originate in the House of Representatives, but the Affordable Care Act did not. As constitutional questions go, this is about as easy as it gets.”
The lead expert witness in today’s hearing, former Rhodes scholar Nicholas Schmitz, has co-authored a peer-reviewed scholarly article titled, “the origination clause: meaning, precedent, and theory from the 12th to 21st century.”
Today’s expert witness’s testimony explains how, “the history of the Origination Clause . . . reveals a deliberate constitutional ‘check and balance’ under which nobody in the federal government except the direct representatives of the people in the House of Representatives, who are elected every two years and who are most familiar with the circumstances of the people, can constitutionally propose federal laws [solely] under the taxing power of Congress.”
On Nov. 18, 2009, Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada introduced in the U.S. Senate what President Obama later signed as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare. On that same day, Reid issued a press release titled “Reid Unveils Senate Health Care Bill,” which is still posted at Reid’s official website
A month later, he issued a second press release
, titled, “Reid Unveils Final Senate Health Care Bill,” explaining that, “This bill will reduce the deficit by $132 billion the first ten years and roughly $1.3 billion in the second. In addition, the bill expands coverage to more than 94% of American under 65 years of age, including over 31 million uninsured.”
In March 2010, Speak of the House Nancy Pelosi uttered her most infamous 16 words: “But we have to pass the [Senate healthcare] bill so that you can find out what’s in it.”
Fourteen days later, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law, the self-described Senate Health Care Bill having passed the House of Representative without a single Republican vote.
When Speaker Pelosi was later asked to defend her infamous remark, she quipped, “It’s because we didn’t have a Senate bill . . . We were urging the Senate to pass a bill.”
Last November, in one of the pending judicial challenges to Obamacare under the Origination Clause, 40 members of the House of Representatives wrote in a friends of the court brief to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit: “If the Senate can introduce the largest tax increase in American history by simply peeling off the House number from a six-page unrelated bill which does not raise taxes and pasting it on the ‘Senate Health Care Bill,’ and then claim with a straight face that the resulting bill originated in the House, in explicit contravention of the supreme law of the land, then the American ‘rule of law’ has become no rule at all.”
It’s time to expose Obamacare for what it is. To quote the judicial opinion of the last federal judge to strike down an Act of Congress under the Origination Clause (Hubbard v. Lowe), any bill for raising revenue that originates in the Senate, including the self-described Senate Health Care Bill, “is not a law at all . . . It is one of those legislative projects which, to be a law, must originate in the lower house.”
Joseph E. Schmitz served as inspector general of the Dept. of Defense from 2002-2005 and is CEO of Joseph E. Schmitz, PLLC. Read more reports from Joseph E. Schmitz — Click Here Now.
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