in Houston, Texas
Supreme Court turns its attention to health care act’s expansion of Medicaid
Wednesday, Mar 28, 2012, 09:34AM CST
By Mark Lisheron

After handling the federal health care law like Chuck Wepner, the Bayonne Bleeder, the Supreme Court today will conclude three days of arguments considering what might become of the law if the court were to invalidate the health insurance mandate.

The Court will also hear arguments about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s expansion of Medicaid, according to the Washington Post today.

Attorneys for Texas and the other 25 states challenging Obamacare contend the addition of millions more people to the Medicaid rolls is, in effect, federal coercion of the states, which currently share the cost of the program.

The federal government is expected to argue, to the surprise of absolutely no one with a passing acquaintance with a tax form, the states are challenging its most inviolate power - to spend our money as it sees fit.

Imagine what might happen to the entire Jenga tower of federally mandated programs if this one key block were removed, the government attorneys are expected to argue today.

The consensus among major news organizations, including the New York Times and the Post, was the Court went the full 15 rounds with Obamacare Tuesday, hammering its insurance mandate midsection.

The Wall Street Journal today suggested the flaying given the legal insurance requirement by famed swing Justice Anthony Kennedy sets up the possibility Obamacare will be struck down by a 5-4 vote of an ideologically fractured Supreme Court.

Kennedy called the mandate "a step beyond what our cases have allowed" when considering laws Congress has passed compelling Americans to participate in and fund federal programs.

The Journal conceded Kennedy seemed to side with one of the government’s key contentions, that the Affordable Care Act does not force people into an insurance transaction because all Americans have a fundamental engagement with health care.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, who helped in the drafting of the court challenge, thought the Supreme Court on Tuesday heard the message from the 26 states.

“It was a very powerful day before the U.S. Supreme Court with robust questions coming from the bench,” Abbott said in a release. “The justices seemed to largely agree with the position the State has taken all along, and that is that Obamacare changes the fundamental relationship between the government and individuals, and also Obamacare is forcing people to do something that is contrary to the prior rulings of the court.”

Contact Mark Lisheron at 512-299-2318 or or on Twitter at @marktxwatchdog.

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