As you have probably heard, 14 states are filing suit against the health care reform bill, calling it an “unprecedented encroachment on the sovereignty of the states”. They claim that “The Constitution nowhere authorizes the United States to mandate, either directly or under threat of penalty, that all citizens and legal residents have qualifying health care coverage”.
But there’s a big problem with this. Way way back in 1798, president John Adams signed into law “An Act for the Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen”, which required all sailors, including privately employed ones, to purchase health care insurance. From the government. Or there would be fines.
Law is based on precedent. And precedent is telling me that this lawsuit is nothing more than a poorly researched political stunt. Case closed.
UPDATE: a 2005 decision written by conservative justices Scalia and Kennedy might make these lawsuits moot.