Attorney Gen. Cuccinelli: Ruling About Liberty, Not Healthcare

Thursday, 28 Jun 2012 02:53 PM

By Arnie Rosenberg

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Virginia Attorney Gen. Ken Cuccinelli found the silver lining in Thursday’s Supreme Court ruling, upholding the Affordable Care Act.

“This was about liberty and not about healthcare,” Cuccinelli told Newsmax.TV. “We got the constitutional protections we were aiming at.”

Virginia was among 26 states that challenged the sweeping healthcare overhaul championed by President Barack Obama. Their lawsuit argued that the federal government could not use the Commerce Clause to require individuals to buy health insurance. The Supreme Court agreed.

“The Commerce Clause was the biggest threat to liberty out there,’ Cuccinelli said. “The court set the outer limit on the power of Congress for the first time since the New Deal. It placed an outer limit on the federal government’s spending on Medicare.”

But Cuccinelli raised the possibility of more litigation in the wake of the 5-4 Supreme Court decision: Individuals and business could be going to court to challenge the penalties — $700 and $3,000, respectively — for not taking insurance or offering it to their employees.

Since the penalties likely will be less than the cost of the insurance, “you don’t have incentive to buy their government-approved health insurance.”

So how did Obamacare make its way into law in the first place?

“Some folks in Congress were not being honest with the American people,” Cuccinelli said. “Others just didn’t know what they were talking about, honestly. We won on the principles and we won on the Constitution. We lost on policy. But 100 years from now, the American people will know the federal government can’t (use the Commerce Clause) compel you into doing something.”

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