Justices Roberts and Kennedy on Affordable Care Act

Audio: Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts announces constitutionality of Obamacare.
3:00 | 10/02/12

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Transcript for Justices Roberts and Kennedy on Affordable Care Act
The -- to their -- rules that congress does not have the power under the commerce clause to enact the individual mandate. The court goes -- underworld that congress does have such power under the -- clause. Finally the court rules that the expansion of Medicaid in the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional. To the extent it allows the federal government to take away a State's Medicaid funds. If the state does not adopt. The expansion. Our decision today is based on our responsibility recognized in Marbury vs Madison to say what the law is. It is not in any -- based on our judgment about whether the Affordable Care Act is good policy. That judgment is for the people acting through their representatives. It is not our job to save the people from the consequences. Of their political choices. The fundamental problem with the court's approach to the case -- this State's statute congress did not -- The court regards restrained -- -- -- interpretation is judicial modesty it is not. It amounts instead to a vast judicial overreaching. It creates -- debilitated in operable version of health care regulation that congress did not act and the public does not expect. The courts but -- disposition invented innate textual is that is does not even have the merit of avoiding constitutional difficulties that creates the the judgment on the Medicaid expansion issue ushers in new federalism concerns. In place places -- unaccustomed strain. Upon the union. Those states the declined to Medicaid expansion must subsidize. By the federal tax dollars taken from their citizens. Vast grass to the states that accept the Medicaid expansion. If that destabilizing. Political dynamic. So antagonistic to a harmonious union is to be introduced or should be by congress not by the industry. The values that should have determine our course today are cautioned. Minimalism. And the understanding that the federal government as one of limited powers but the court's ruling undermines these is that -- returned. In the name of restraint it over -- the name of constitutional avoidance it creates new constitutional questions. In the name of cooperative federalism it -- states are.

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