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Somin Comments on Health Care Law Ruling

Professor Ilya Somin commented in The Daily Caller on the 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals' recent ruling that the individual mandate in the health care law is unconstitutional, saying, "It's a very strong opinion on most issues."

"It does a very good job of explaining why there's no way to uphold this mandate without giving Congress the power to enforce a mandate of any kind," he continued. A key distinction in this case, says Somin, is that the individual mandate regulates inactivity, rather than activity.

"By and large, the Supreme Court has taken an extremely expansive view of Commerce Clause powers," Somin states. "But this case is different because the Court has never addressed the question of regulation of inactivity. There's always been some kind of preexisting activity that Congress was regulating."

The 11th Circuit's ruling conflicts with another circuit court ruling, making it likely the matter will be decided by the Supreme Court.

In a related story carried by Reuters, Somin's comment that "Given the deep ideological divisions over the case and the lack of precedent clearly on point, the court could easily rule either way" was cited in an article postulating that the law's fate may lie in the hands of Chief Justice John Roberts or Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy. 

Stage set for Supreme Court showdown over Obamacare, The Daily Caller, August 15, 2011. By C.J. Ciaramella.
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Obama healthcare law: two justices may decide fate, Reuters, August 15, 2011. By James Vicini.
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Somin: Insurance mandate has fatal flaws, Newsday, August 16, 2011. By Ilya Somin
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ObamaCare meets the Supremes, Pittsburgh Tribune Review, August 20, 2011. By Craig Smith.
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