Cuccinelli Sends Obamacare Toward the Supreme Court

After the passage of the new health care legislation, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, a Catholic, filed suit, questioning the constitutionality of the federal government requiring its citizens to buy health insurance. Yesterday, U. S. District Court Judge Henry Hudson (no relation) ruled that:

“The mandate on individuals in President Barack Obama’s health-care legislation goes beyond Congress’s powers to regulate interstate commerce.” Hudson severed the issue of the mandate, which is set to become effective in 2014, and didn’t address other provisions such as expanding Medicaid.

Cuccinelli has requested that the Justice Department allow the case to pass through to the Supreme Court without review by a Federal Appeals Court, but a spokesman at Justice has declined comment.

It remains to be seen how the USCCB will respond to this decision.  The bishops have long supported a “universal” health care system, though they have not specified that it be underwritten by the federal government.

 

The bishops objected to the abortion coverage in the health care legislation but supported the concept of the federal government requiring, under threat of legal punishment, every citizen to buy health insurance.

The USCCB, as far as I know, never responded to issues about the constitutionality of the health care bill.  This is not surprising, since much of the public policy advocated by the Conference seems to have little concern for subsidarity or limiting the size of the federal goverment. 

This might be a good time for those at the Conference who handle this issue to start imagining another approach to achieving the goal of universal health care without violating either the Constitution or the Church’s own commitment to subsidiarity. 

Deal W. Hudson

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Deal W. Hudson is ​publisher and editor of The Christian Review and the host of "Church and Culture," a weekly two-hour radio show on the Ave Maria Radio Network.​ Formerly publisher and editor of Crisis Magazine for ten years, his articles and comments have been published widely in publications such as the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, and U.S. News and World Report. He has also appeared on TV and radio news shows such as the O'Reilly Factor, Hannity & Colmes, NBC News, and All Things Considered on National Public Radio. Hudson worked with Karl Rove in coordinating then-Gov. George W. Bush's outreach to Catholic voters in 2000 and 2004. In October 2003, President Bush appointed him a member of the official delegation from the United States to attend the 25th anniversary celebration of John Paul II's papacy. Hudson, a former professor of philosophy for 15 years, is the editor and author of eight books. He tells the story of his conversion from Southern Baptist to Catholic in An American Conversion (Crossroad, 2003), and his latest, Onward, Christian Soldiers: The Growing Political Power of Catholics and Evangelicals in the United States, was published in March 2008. He is married to Theresa Carver Hudson, also a Baptist convert, and they have two children, Hannah and Cyprian who was adopted from Romania in 2001.

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