If I ever had the misfortune of paying to be taught about Constitutional law by the now-President Barack Hussein Obama, I think I would be demanding a refund:
The president spoke at length about the case at a joint press conference with the leaders of Mexico and Canada. The president, adopting what he described as the language of conservatives who fret about judicial activism, questioned how an "unelected group of people" could overturn a law approved by Congress.
"I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress," Obama said.
"I’m confident that this will be upheld because it should be upheld," Obama said, describing the law as "constitutional."
*sigh* Where to start?
1. Tautologies are not arguments; in fact, if you look at the definition, it says, "needless repetition of an idea, especially in words other than those of the immediate context, without imparting additional force or clearness, as in “widow woman.”" Furthermore, "proof by vigorous assertion" is a logical fallacy that is tantamount to simply talking over your dissenters and trying to drown them out.
2. The President’s opinion as to whether or not a law should be upheld or whether or not it is Constitutional is frankly irrelevant at this point in the game. Hell, that office’s opinion on the Constitutionality of a specific law is pretty much irrelevant at any point in the game. I would like to believe that the President would never sign a law he knows to be unconstitutional, but damned if I can bring myself to honestly believe that.
3. Which brings us to Article III, Sections 1 and 2 of the United States Constitution – a document with which Our Glorious President is supposedly well-versed:
The judicial Power of the United States shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behaviour, and shall, at stated Times, receive for their Services a Compensation, which shall not be diminished during their Continuance in Office.
The judicial Power shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United States, and Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their Authority;–to all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls;–to all Cases of admiralty and maritime Jurisdiction;–to Controversies to which the United States shall be a Party;–to Controversies between two or more States;– between a State and Citizens of another State,–between Citizens of different States,–between Citizens of the same State claiming Lands under Grants of different States, and between a State, or the Citizens thereof, and foreign States, Citizens or Subjects.
In all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall have original Jurisdiction. In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make.
The Supreme Court’s explicit job, as spelled out by the governing document of our nation, is exactly to decide on the merits of a law if the case is brought before them and they accept it. In this particular case, it was appealed through lower courts until it was received by the Justices, and here we are today. It is tremendously concerning that Our Glorious President does not understand the concept of "checks and balances" or the role of one of the three branches of our government.
4. "Majority" does not mean "right". "Democratically elected" does not mean "best men for the job".
5. Yes, the Supreme Court Justices are an "unelected group of people". And? Here is a hint to the retired "Constitutional scholar" currently occupying the Office of the President: that is the way the system is SUPPOSED to work. As Marko points out, if the Justices were faced with the spectre of answering to the populace over their rulings, there would be no point in having a Supreme Court to begin with; the end result would be the same – mob rule. And, I know this comes as a shock to you, but the Founding Fathers were NOT fond of mob rule. In fact, they were not fond of "democracy" either… which is why America is a republic.
6. And finally, the "Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act" passed in the House with a 219-212 vote and passed in the Senate with a 60-39 vote – a majority, yes, but hardly a "strong" one. On the other hand, in 1933, the "National Industrial Recovery Act" passed in the the House with a vote of 325-76 and in the Senate with a vote of 58-24; now we are getting into the "resounding" realm. Also in 1933, the "Agricultural Adjustment Act" passed in the House 315-98 and in the Senate 64-20; again, a larger margin than Obamacare.
So what do the latter two laws have in common? Well, they were both ruled unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court; the former in 1935 on the basis of "void for vagueness" and "overbroad" delegation of authority to the Executive Branch, and the latter in 1936 for effectively robbing Paul to pay Peter.
In other words, Our Glorious President referring to the possibility of his "health care" law being ruled unconstitutional as an "unprecedented, extraordinary step" on the basis of the majority of Congress endorsing it is simply a bald-faced lie. And if he lied about something as stupidly easy to check up on as that, what else has he lied about?
And here I am, not even a Constitutional scholar, much less "teacher", schooling a supposed Constitutional law instructor and current President of the United States on how the Constitution works and what the various branches of government – including his – can, cannot, and must do. Is it any great wonder why I have next to no faith at all in the continuation of our American experiment?