The Supreme Court Has Reached A Decision On Hobby Lobby

Fox News is reporting today that the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby in its suit against the ObamaCare requirement that it provide contraceptives for female employees.

The article reports:

The justices’ 5-4 decision is the first time that the high court has ruled that profit-seeking businesses can hold religious views under federal law. And it means the Obama administration must search for a different way of providing free contraception to women who are covered under objecting companies’ health insurance plans.

…The court stressed that its ruling applies only to corporations that are under the control of just a few people in which there is no essential difference between the business and its owners.

Alito also said the decision is limited to contraceptives under the health care law. “Our decision should not be understood to hold that an insurance-coverage mandate must necessarily fall if it conflicts with an employer’s religious beliefs,” Alito said.

The really good news here is that Hobby Lobby will remain in business. There was some question as to whether the company would have stayed in business had the family that owns the company  been forced to do things that were in conflict with their religious beliefs.

Prayer Before Meetings Backed By The Supreme Court

Yesterday Reuters posted an article on the Supreme Court’s decision to allow prayer before public meetings. Please note that it was a five to four decision. Our right to prayer at public meetings was upheld by one vote.

The details of the decision can be found at the Supreme Court’s website. The decision included the following:

An insistence on nonsectarian or ecumenical prayer as a single, fixed standard is not consistent with the traditionof legislative prayer outlined in the Court’s cases. The Court found the prayers in Marsh consistent with the First Amendment not because they espoused only a ge- neric theism but because our history and tradition have shown that prayer in this limited context could “coexis[t]with the principles of disestablishment and religious freedom.” 463 U. S., at 786. The Congress that drafted the First Amendment would have been accustomed to invocations containing explicitly religious themes of the sort respondents find objectionable. One of the Senate’s first chaplains, the Rev. William White, gave prayers in a series that included the Lord’s Prayer, the Collect for Ash Wednesday, prayers for peace and grace, a general thanksgiving, St. Chrysostom’s Prayer, and a prayer seeking “the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, &c.” Letter from W. White to H. Jones (Dec. 29, 1830), in B. Wilson,Memoir of the Life of the Right Reverend William White, D.D., Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the State of Pennsylvania 322 (1839); see also New Hampshire Patriot & State Gazette, Dec. 15, 1823, p. 1 (describing a Senate prayer addressing the “Throne of Grace”); Cong.Globe, 37th Cong., 1st Sess., 2 (1861) (reciting the Lord’s Prayer). The decidedly Christian nature of these prayers must not be dismissed as the relic of a time when our Nation was less pluralistic than it is today. Congress continues to permit its appointed and visiting chaplains to express themselves in a religious idiom. It acknowledges our growing diversity not by proscribing sectarian content  but by welcoming ministers of many creeds. See, e.g., 160

America is a Christian country. There is room for everyone here, but at its root, America was founded on Judeo-Christian principles. Congress has chaplains and opens with prayer. This ruling gives local government bodies the right to open in prayer also.

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Hobby Lobby At The Supreme Court

Yesterday the Supreme Court heard arguments in the Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties case about the companies’ right to manage their businesses according to the religious beliefs of their owners. Breitbart.com has a summary of some of the dialogue that went on in the Court.

Some of the highlights:

Former U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement, arguing for the plaintiffs, began, “When a federal government agency compelled employers to provide something as religiously sensitive as contraception, it knew that free exercise and RFRA claims would soon follow.”

He went on to quote RFRA’s language applying its protections to all federal statutes and regulations unless Congress specifically provides otherwise, both those already on the books and those to be enacted in the future. Congress later broadened RFRA to protect “any exercise” of religion, unless the government can show the burden on faith is the least restrictive means to accomplish a truly compelling public interest. This test is called “strict scrutiny” in constitutional law, an extremely demanding standard that few government actions survive.

…Sotomayor also pointed out that organizations have the option of dropping all insurance coverage and paying $2,000 per employee, per year, for violating what is called the ACA’s employer mandate. Clement objected that the Green family—owners of Hobby Lobby—consider it a form of Christian ministry to provide healthcare for their employees. He also said this was a choice for Hobby Lobby of between paying a $475 million penalty for violating the abortion mandate or a $26 million penalty for violating the employer mandate.

…Although it’s certainly not definite who won the case, at least four justices seemed to side with religious objectors over the Obama administration’s mandate, and very likely a fifth with Kennedy. (Even Justice Stephen Breyer said several supportive comments during argument, but it’s probably too much for the plaintiffs to hope they picked up a sixth vote.)

There are other issues regarding which millions of Americans are currently asserting religious objections. Hobby Lobby could include pronouncements on several principles which could tip those issues one way or the other in court.

The decision on the case will not be released until June.

The thing to remember in watching this case is that the case is not about birth control–it is about abortion. Healthcare plans at Hobby Lobby already provide for birth control–at issue is ‘after the fact’ birth control, which simply causes an abortion. The mandate in ObamaCare is the government’s first step toward federally-funded abortion, which is now illegal under the Hyde Amendment. If Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties can be forced to include abortion pills in their healthcare plans, despite the religious beliefs of their owners, the government will be able to limit the religious freedom of all Americans.

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Are They Being Denied Asylum Because They Might Vote Republican?

PLEASE SEE THE UPDATE AT THE END OF THIS STORY!!!!!

America has allowed millions of illegal immigrants to stay in this country. The Obama Administration has made it easy for children who were brought here to get tuition breaks, temporary visas, and many things to allow them to remain in America. However, one family seeking asylum because they fear having their children taken away from them has been denied asylum by the Obama Administration. The family was originally granted asylum, but the Obama Administration then denied that asylum, and the family began a court battle to remain in America. The odd thing here is that the Obama Administration has spent a lot of resources fighting the original asylum decision, while at the same time loosening immigration laws for thousands of other people. It makes no sense. However, here is the story.

The Washington Post reported the story yesterday:

The Supreme Court on Monday (March 3) declined to hear an appeal from a family seeking asylum in the United States because home schooling is not allowed in their native Germany.

HSLDA helped the Romeikes leave Germany in 2008 after they were threatened with jail time and losing custody of their children. The Romeikes are evangelical Christians, and say they should be allowed to keep their children home to teach them Christian values.

An immigration judge in Tennessee granted the Romeikes’ bid in 2010, but the Board of Immigration Appeals overturned the ruling in 2012, arguing that religious home-schoolers don’t face any special threats.

The family lost their appeal in federal court in May 2013. The U.S. grants safe haven to people who have a well-founded fear of persecution, but not necessarily to those under governments with laws that differ from those in the U.S., Judge Jeffrey Sutton wrote in the court’s decision.

“The German authorities have not singled out the Romeikes in particular or homeschoolers in general for persecution,” Sutton wrote.

We need to remember that parents should have the last word in the education of their children.

From the Home School Legal Defense Association Facebook (HSLDA)  page:

Today, a Supervisor with the Department of Homeland Security called a member of our legal team to inform us that the Romeike family has been granted “indefinite deferred status”. This means that the Romeikes can stay in the United States permanently (unless they are convicted of a crime, etc.)

This is an incredible victory that can only be credited to our Almighty God.

We also want to thank those of who spoke up on this issue–including that long ago White House petition. We believe that the public outcry made this possible while God delivered the victory.

This is an amazing turnaround in 24 hours. Praise the Lord.

Proverbs 21: 1 “The king’s heart is like a stream of water directed by the Lord, He guides it wherever He pleases.”
~~Michael Farris

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Rewriting History As You Go Along

It has been thirteen years since the disputed 2000 election. Younger voters who voted in the 2008 and 2012 elections probably do not have a clear picture of exactly what happened in that election. Chris Matthews isn’t helping.

The Daily Caller posted a transcript of a Chris Matthews discussion with Joe Scarborough on Morning Joe on MSNBC.

Christ Matthews stated:

Obama “has had a very difficult opposition out there … who from the very beginning wanted to destroy this presidency,” he said. “And some of it is ethnic, and some is good old ideology. But they way they treated this guy is unusual in our history.”

“Al Gore accepted the fact, even though he won by 600,000 votes, that W. was president. And the Democrats accepted the legitimacy of George W. Bush 100 percent,” he added, when host Joe Scarborough tried to push back a bit.

On November 12, 2001, The New York Times stated:

A comprehensive review of the uncounted Florida ballots from last year’s presidential election reveals that George W. Bush would have won even if the United States Supreme Court had allowed the statewide manual recount of the votes that the Florida Supreme Court had ordered to go forward.

Contrary to what many partisans of former Vice President Al Gore have charged, the United States Supreme Court did not award an election to Mr. Bush that otherwise would have been won by Mr. Gore. A close examination of the ballots found that Mr. Bush would have retained a slender margin over Mr. Gore if the Florida court’s order to recount more than 43,000 ballots had not been reversed by the United States Supreme Court.

Even under the strategy that Mr. Gore pursued at the beginning of the Florida standoff — filing suit to force hand recounts in four predominantly Democratic counties — Mr. Bush would have kept his lead, according to the ballot review conducted for a consortium of news organizations.

The New York Times is certainly not a conservative newspaper. They were generally not kind to George W. Bush, but they got the facts about the recount right. Either Chris Matthews is badly misinformed or he is lying. Either way, I suspect many young voters or voters who have forgotten or were not paying attention believed him. Rewriting history is a true danger to our representative republic. It is the media’s job to tell the truth. It is a shame that they have forsaken their responsibility.

Just for the record, President Obama has not been treated badly by the opposition. There have been people questioning the amount of secrecy surrounding his past–his education, some of his activities in Chicago, some of his campaign tactics, etc. Those are legitimate questions that should be asked of any candidate. Unfortunately, an element of practicing personal destruction instead of debating political issues has crept into our politics in recent times. We saw that element in the 2012 presidential election. Policies took a back seat to scare tactics and claims that Mitt Romney was a rich man who had no compassion for the poor. As someone who lived in Massachusetts during the time Mitt Romney was governor, I can tell you that there is no truth in that statement. However, the press worked hard to present that image. Until the media ignores those people practicing the politics of personal destruction, all Presidents will be treated badly by some element of the opposition. The mainstream media however, will continue to be cheerleaders for the Democrats and complain when anyone says anything negative about their candidates or the policies of their candidates. Unfortunately, that is where we are.

Meanwhile, we need to guard against the rewriting of history and challenge it whenever possible.

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Around The Edges Of The Supreme Court Case Regarding The Contraception Mandate

Commentary Magazine posted an article today about the latest challenge to ObamaCare that is headed to the Supreme Court. The article examines the approach that the political left and those that support ObamaCare will probably take in arguing the case.

The article states:

Indeed, while liberal activists will repeatedly try to cast this in the mold of the fictional “war on women,” their own arguments reveal just how far-reaching a definitive ruling on this would be for American religious and political practice.

…So this is much more than a fight over birth control, or even health insurance. It’s about two fundamentally different views on American constitutional freedoms. Conservatives want those freedoms to be expansive and protected, as the Founders did. Liberals want those freedoms to be curtailed lest the citizenry get greedy or the democratic process imperil the state’s coercive powers.

The Founders saw religious freedom as elemental to personal liberty in America. But they were not alone in thinking that unimpeded religious worship was a guard against an overly ambitious or arrogant national government.

If we lose our spiritual foundation as a country, we will also be in danger of losing our freedom.

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Private Property Rights Are Important In America

One of the foundations of the American republic is the concept of private property rights. Occasionally those rights have been under attack and the battle has been lost–for example the Supreme Court decision regarding Kelo and the State of Connecticut. (n June of 2005, the United States Supreme Court ruled that the City of New London, Connecticut, could, under the rule of eminent domain, seize the homes of several homeowners in order to use the land for a purpose that would generate more tax revenue for the City.)  Due to tough economic times (and basic karma), the plant that was built on that site closed and moved to Groton.

At any rate, property rights of Americans have been threatened on numerous occasions. The latest threat comes from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) following the plan already outlined in Agenda 21.

Today’s Washington Examiner is reporting on a new EPA rule:

...the “Water Body Connectivity Report” – that would remove the limiting word “navigable” from “navigable waters of the United States” and replace it with “connectivity of streams and wetlands to downstream waters” as the test for Clean Water Act regulatory authority.

…If approved, the new rule would give EPA unprecedented power over private property across the nation, gobbling up everything near seasonal streams, isolated wetlands, prairie potholes, and almost anything that occasionally gets wet.

Smith and Stewart (House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith of Texas and Rep. Chris Stewart of Utah, chairman of its environment subcommittee)accuse EPA of “pushing through a rule with vast economic and regulatory implications before the agency’s Science Advisory Board has had an opportunity to review the underlying science.”

If this sounds familiar, it is. This is the language used by the United Nation‘s Agenda 21 program:

As I reported in December 2011 (rightwinggranny.com):

One of the aspects of Agenda 21 is the location of vernal pools and the ‘corridors’ that connect them. Those pools and corridors are then used as excuses to severely limit the use of property. Property owners can be asked to make alterations to their property that are extremely expensive and that might cause them to abandon the property. Property owners can also be severely limited as to what they can do on their own property.

A land grab is a land grab. It doesn’t matter whether it comes from the UN or from our own government–it is still a land grab. Pay attention–this could be coming to your town soon.

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What The Supreme Court Said Yesterday

Investors.com posted an article yesterday explaining the Supreme Court decision regarding the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). I will admit that when I first heard the ruling I did not understand exactly what was involved. I am grateful to Investors.com for their clear concise explanation.

The article explains:

In ruling that workers who choose not to be union members must be able to object immediately to unexpected fee increases or similar levies required of all employees in closed shops, the high court touched a nerve in the conflict between Big Labor and the right-to-work movement.

…The union’s gall in this specific case in underlined by the fact that it was taking money from nonmembers to defeat, in 2005, California’s Proposition 75, which would have prohibited the SEIU from using dues or fees for political contributions without employees’ written consent.

“Thus, the effect of the SEIU’s procedure was to force many nonmembers to subsidize a political effort designed to restrict their own rights,” Justice Samuel Alito noted.

There has been a lot of complaining from the left side of the political spectrum about the Citizen’s United ruling of the Supreme Court. That ruling prohibited the government from restricting spending either by corporations or unions. The left objected to the fact that corporations were now able to get into the election funding game. At least corporations are spending their own profits and are answerable to their stockholders. The use of union dues to fund political campaigns without the consent of those paying the dues is questionable at best. At least now non-union members have some control over the money they are asked to pay the unions.

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Protecting The Property Rights Of Americans

The Blaze is reporting today that Senators John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) have introduced legislation to limit the government’s power of eminent domain, the seizure of private property without the owner’s consent. This is the link to the actual legislation introduced.

The law, The Protection of Homes, Small Businesses and Private Property Act of 2012, coincides with the seventh anniversary of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Kelo v. the City of New London, which allowed the City of New London to arbitrarily take private property from one person and give it to another with the intent of increasing the city’s tax base.

On December 1, 2009, I reported on the outcome of that property seizure (rightwinggranny.com):

So let’s look at where we are now.  The taking of the property was used to lure Pfizer Pharmaceutical Company to New London to build a research center.  Pfizer Pharmaceutical Company arrived, built its New London research center on the seized property, and this week announced that it was closing the plant.  Most of the plants 1,400 employees will be relocated to nearby Groton. 

Now the City of New London won’t even have the tax revenue from the people who once lived in that area of New London.  They will simply have a vacant research center.  Poetic justice at its best.

The Supreme Court made the wrong decision in Kelo–they seriously undermined the property rights of Americans. Please follow the link above to the article at The Blaze to read about recent misuses of eminent domain. Thank goodness for Senators like John Cornyn and Rand Paul who are willing to stand up for individual property rights.

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As We Await The Supreme Court’s Decision On Obamacare…

CNS News posted a story on Friday about the impact of Obamacare on the cost of health insurance.

Edward Fensholt, senior vice president of Lockton Companies, LLC, an insurance brokerage and consulting firm that provides employee-benefits expertise to 2,500 mostly middle-market employers, told the House Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor and Pensions:

“These mandates have increased our clients’ health plan costs 2 to 3 percent on average to this point,” he said. And he said the costs will escalate further when new rules — such as reductions in waiting periods and the automatic enrollment requirement — take effect in 2014.

Note that the new rules take effect long after the coming election.

The article reports:

Bill Streitberger, vice president of human resources for the Red Robin restaurant chain, told the panel that when health care costs increase, his company has less money to invest in opening new restaurants.

For the last three years, he noted, Red Robin’s health care costs per employee have increased more than six percent every year — a much greater pace than the growth of Red Robin’s sales or net income, he said.

There are some basic changes needed in America’s health insurance system–portability, tax breaks for buying health insurance, tort reform, etc. Obamacare never addresses tort reform. Obamacare takes away the free market and places the entire healthcare system under government control. That is a really bad idea, and hopefully the Supreme Court will strike down the entire bill so that the current Congress can try again.

 

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A Preemptive Strike On The Supreme Court

The Hill is reporting today that the Obama Administration has diverted roughly $500 million to the IRS to help implement the president’s healthcare law.

The article reports:

The money is only part of the IRS’s total implementation spending, and it is being provided outside the normal appropriations process. The tax agency is responsible for several key provisions of the new law, including the unpopular individual mandate.

It is very interesting to me that the money is being provided ‘outside the normal appropriations process.’

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Obamacare is under discussion at the Supreme Court. It is interesting to me that this donation to the IRS could not wait under the Supreme Court handed down its decision. Maybe I am becoming overly cynical in my old age, but I have the feeling that Obamacare is going to be implemented regardless of how the Supreme Court rules.

The article further reports:

The law contains dozens of targeted appropriations to implement specific provisions. It also gave the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) a $1 billion implementation fund, to use as it sees fit. Republicans have called it a “slush fund.”

HHS plans to drain the entire fund by September — before the presidential election, and more than a year before most of the healthcare law takes effect. Roughly half of that money will ultimately go to the IRS.

HHS has transferred almost $200 million to the IRS over the past two years and plans to transfer more than $300 million this year, according to figures provided by a congressional aide.

We are in serious danger of having our Constitution become a worthless piece of paper.

Meanwhile, this is a YouTube audio I have added for your consideration. It is a portion of the Michael Savage radio program. I would like to dismiss it as over the top, but there is enough plausible information in it to prevent me from doing that. Please listen and draw your own conclusions.

 

I am sincerely worried about the future of America.

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I Had To Go To Pravda To Get This Story

I am not kidding. I found the link to this information at Pravda (Russian for ‘truth”). I wonder why they are posting the story, considering that President Obama is their friend, but on the other hand, the current Russian government is not known for its pro-American feelings. How would the Russians feel about President Joe Biden? That is just a scary thought.

Anyway, the Tea Party Tribune (who knew they had a publication?) posted a memo by nine state Attorneys General listing the ways the Obama Administration has aggressively used administrative agencies to implement policy objectives that cannot gain congressional approval and are outside of the law.

This is the list of violations:

  • FCC: Regulation of the Internet in the face of a court order from Circuit Court of Appeals for Washington D.C. stating that the FCC does not have the power to regulate the Internet
  • PPACA: Individual Mandate; To be heard by Supreme Court of the United States in March
  • EPA 1: GHG lawsuit; EPA’s own Inspector General reported last September that EPA failed to comply with its own data standards; Heard in Circuit Court of Appeals for Washington D.C. in February
  • OSM: Attempting to impose regulatory requirements on the 19 states with authority for exclusive regulation of their coalmines for the first time in more than 30 years
  • NLRB: Boeing; Engaged in unprecedented behavior as described by former Chairmen under both Presidents Bush (43) and Clinton; behavior is best exemplified in South Carolina where the Board tried to muzzle over 80 percent of state voters who supported a secret ballot amendment to the South Carolina Constitution and attempted unsuccessfully to tell an employer in the state where they can and cannot base manufacturing facilities
  • EPA: Florida Water; EPA’s numeric nutrient criteria pre-empted Florida standards; U.S. District Judge upheld the state’s site-specific alternative criteria for streams and rivers
  • EPA: Texas Air; TX filed lawsuit challenging Cross-State Air Pollution Rules; application rule to TX was particularly dubious because state was included in the regulation at the last minute and without an opportunity to respond to the proposed regulation; regulation was based on a dubious claim that air pollution from TX affected a single air-quality monitor in Granite City, Illinois more than 500 miles and three states away from Texas
  • EPA: Oklahoma Air; EPA illegally usurped Oklahoma’s authority in the Clean Air Act to determine the state’s own plan for addressing sources of emissions that affect visibility, by imposing a federal implementation plan; Federal plan goes beyond the authority granted to the EPA in the Clean Air Act and will result in $2 billion in cost to install technology needed to complete the EPA plan, and a permanent increase of 15-20 percent in the cost of electricity; Obama Administration is fighting Oklahoma’s appeal, which was filed in the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals
  • HHS: Religious Liberty; HHS mandated religious entities such as Catholic, Baptist and Jewish schools and churches be required to provided medical services they find unconscionable to their employees; President attempted to compromise with an “accommodation” in name only that required insurance companies to provide the services for free to the religious organization employees; Accommodation made matters worse as many religious-base hospitals and schools are self-insurers; Seven Attorneys General filed suit to protect religious liberty and oppose the HHS mandate
  • DOJ: South Carolina & Voting Rights Act: Rejecting voter ID statutes that are similar to those already approved by the Supreme Court of the United States; DOJ ignored section 8 of the Voting Rights Act which calls for protections against voter fraud, and used section 5 to administratively block measures to protect the integrity of elections passed by state legislatures in preclearance states including South Carolina; South Carolina voter ID law merely requires a voter to show photo identification in order to vote or to complete an affidavit at the pain of perjury if the voter does not have a photo ID
  • DOJ: Arizona & Voting Rights Act: Rejecting voter ID statutes that are similar to those already approved by the Supreme Court of the United States
  • DOJ: Arizona Immigration; In violation of 10th Amendment, federal government to sue to prevent AZ from using reasonable measures to discourage illegal immigration within Arizona’s borders; Affects Arizona because state has a large percentage, compared to other states, of illegal immigrants and need to be able to act to reduce the number
  • DOJ: Alabama Immigration; The DOJ challenged Alabama’s immigration reform laws after parts were “green lighted” by a federal judge; DOJ appealed the ruling; parts of the AL case have been struck down in various federal courts; specific provisions of the law include collection of the immigration status of public school students, businesses must use E-Verify, prohibition of illegal immigrants receiving public benefits; the provision requiring immigrants to always carry alien registration cards; allowance of lawsuits by state citizens who do not believe public officials are enforcing the law
  • DOJ: South Carolina Immigration; DOJ challenged South Carolina’s immigration reform laws that are very similar to the AZ which is scheduled to appear before the United States Supreme Court; SC case will be heard by the 4th Circuit soon there after as the 4th Circuit granted SC motion to extend the filing time until after the US Supreme Court issues an Opinion in AZ
  • Congressional: “Recess” appointments to NLRB (three) and CFPB (one)
  • EEOC: Hosanna Tabor (MI); Sought to reinstate a minister who was discharged for her disagreement with the religious doctrine of the church
  • DOE: Yucca Mountain; In 2009, Administration arbitrarily broke federal law and derailed the most studied energy project in American history when DOE announced intent to withdraw 8,000 page Yucca Mountain licensing application with prejudice; SC and Washington State filed suit, as a result, contesting the unconstitutional action; American people have paid more than $31 billion (including interest) through percentages of electric rate fees towards the project and taxpayers have footed an addition $200 million in legal feeds and over $2 billion in judgments against the DOE for breaking contracts associated with Yucca Mountain
    1. DOI: Glendale Casino (AZ); Glendale is a violation because the Federal Government is forcing a family-oriented town, Glendale, to become another Las Vegas against its will.  Essentially, the Federal Government has granted ‘reservation status’ to a 54-acre plot in the same town, where the Tohono O’odham Nation plans to build a resort and casino.

My question is simple, “Where is the media on this?” Why did I have to go to Pravda to find the link? The current administration needs to be reminded legally in a big way what the U.S. Constitution says about the government’s power in America. If the media won’t do that, the people need to do it in November.

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A President Who Chose To Ignore A Ruling By The Supreme Court

The American Thinker reminds us today that there has been only one President in American history who ignored a ruling by the Supreme Court. What happened after that was not good.

In 1830, Andrew Jackson, the founder of the Democrat Party, signed the “Indian Removal Act of 1830.”  The Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee-Creek, and Seminole Indians (known as the “Five Civilized Tribes”) had prospered, and President Jackson had ordered the Army to relocate them. The Supreme Court intervened, and in 1831 SCOTUS ruled on behalf of the Cherokee Nation in Cherokee Nation v. Georgia. President Jackson ignored the order.

The article reports what happened next:

…the deaths of thousands of Cherokees followed.  The ruination of their businesses, culture, and theft of their lands was the outcome.  Those lands were ostensibly given to whites, while the Cherokees and the four other tribes were forcibly marched west to uncharted territory and left to die. 

Mr. Jackson was succeeded by another Democrat, Martin VanBuren, who had been Jackson’s Secretary of State.  He followed in his predecessor’s footsteps and made sure that the slaughter and theft of land, businesses, and pride continued long after Mr. Jackson got the ball rolling.  

Part of the problem was that gold had been discovered on the Cherokee land in Georgia. Greed was the obvious motive. This was one of the darkest moments in American history. The Supreme Court was right ot oppose what was happening.

I believe that the Supreme Court will be correct in opposing Obamacare. They will prevent the death of many Americans by refusing to ruin one of the best healthcare systems in the world.

 

 

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The Next Battle In The Healthcare War

On Thursday, Matt Sheffield posted an article at CNS News about the next step in the war over Obamacare. Although it is not at all a sure thing, there are many people who feel that the Supreme Court will strike down the law as unconstitutional because it requires all Americans to purchase a product whether they want to or not. Mr. Sheffield points out that the left is already preparing for the next battle. He cites some recent statements by left-leaning pundits:

If the Supreme Court strikes down the individual mandate in Obamacare, the result will be higher insurance premiums and, “we’ll just blame Republicans for it,” says Democratic strategist Bob Beckel, appearing on the Wednesday edition of Fox News’ The Five.

…Andrew Koppelman, writing in Salon today, asserted that the arguments against the individual mandate amount to nothing more than “silliness,” and said the “silly” arguments “nonetheless seemed to sometimes move Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Anthony Kennedy, Antonin Scalia and Samuel Alito.”
 
…Steven Rosenfeld, writing at AlterNet, says Republicans “don’t want to fix our broken healthcare system.” He writes: “The Republican Party again showed its petulant, “party-of-no” face on Tuesday as lawyers representing 26 red states and conservative think-tanks told the U.S. Supreme Court that nobody should be forced have health insurance—even if people carrying insurance end up subsidizing the defiantly uninsured who get ill.
 
The Supreme Court is expected to release its decision sometime in June or July. Prepare for healthcare to be a major issue during the 2012 election. Be ready to listen carefully as very little of what you hear may actually be true.
 
 
 
 
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Some Things To Consider In The Budget Debate And The Obamacare Debate

This video at YouTube shows exactly what Obamacare will do to Senior Citizens:

 

Remember, Obamacare will take $500 billion out of Medicare over the next ten years and put it in Medicaid. That is being done as the baby boomers reach the age where they will join Medicare. Medicare as it is will not exist in five years–it is going bankrupt. Don’t fall for the scare tactics being used against Republican budget plans that they will kill Medicare–they are not the ones who already took $500 billion away from it!

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Some Thoughts On The Supreme Court Debate On The Affordable Care Act This Week

Jennifer Rubin at the Washington Post posted an article yesterday summing up her feelings about the Supreme Court debate this week.

Ms. Rubin wrote that Obamcare suffered a severability trainwreck at the Supreme Court. The argument for striking down the entire law if the individual mandate is found unconstitutional is that without the individual mandate to herd customers to insurance companies and provide financial support for the other provisions of the law, the goal of universal access would be thwarted. The individual mandate is the only way that Obamacare can provide insurance coverage for everyone. Because Obamacare goes against basic business principles (as well as the U. S. Constitution), it will not work.

The article reports:

It was that kind of day for the government. The argument today was another instance in which the challengers rolled up their sleeves, got into the text of the statute and made a convincing case. The government never sufficiently spelled out how the mandate could be severed from the rest of the bill without upsetting the intricate system of subsidies and the goal of expanded access. In hiding the ball from the public by virtue of an overly intricate fog of misdirection, and in disguising the essence of the scheme — healthy, young people who might not otherwise want insurance are compelled to buy it to ameliorate the costs of others — Congress sent the Supreme Court a legal knot that will be hard to undo.

Part of the arguments for Obamacare come from people who do not understand how insurance works. There does need to be some protection for people who develop serious medical problems so that their insurance companies cannot abandon them–however, we can use a fly swatter instead of a nuclear weapon to deal with this issue and still get the job done.

If the free market were allowed to operate in health insurance, we would be able to find our way out of any current insurance problems without doing things that will not work and are unconstitutional. A few basic suggestions–tort reform, portability of health insurance from one job to another, tax breaks to help people afford health insurance, selling health insurance across state lines. These ideas are all constitutional and might actually help solve the problem of the high cost of health insurance.

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Yesterday At The Supreme Court

Paul Clement was the lawyer arguing at the Supreme Court on behalf of Florida and the other states who are challenging Obamacare.

I have listened to a large part of his argument against the idea that the Commerce Clause allows the government to force people into commerce in order the regulate them rather than to regulate the people who are already engaging in commerce. I believe that Obamacare as it is written is not constitutional, but we shall see what the court decides.

The discussion I have heard is that if Obamacare is found constitutional, the idea that our government is a government of enumerated limited powers is over. If the individual mandate part of Obamacare is found constitutional, be ready to have the government require you to join a gym, eat certain foods, purchase a car, etc.

We will have to wait until June to know what the outcome of this case will be, but hopefully Obamacare will die with the individual mandate.

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The Supreme Court Rules On Lutheran School Teacher Firing

On Wednesday, Christianity Today posted an article about the recent Supreme Court decision regarding the firing of a school teacher in a Lutheran School. The court ruled that the teacher was a ‘minister’ and could not sue the church after she was fired in 2005.

The article reports:

“The First Amendment provides, in part, that ‘Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,'” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the unanimous opinion. “We have said that these two Clauses ‘often exert conflicting pressures,’ and that there can be ‘internal tension … between the Establishment Clause and the Free Exercise Clause.’ Not so here. Both Religion Clauses bar the government from interfering with the decision of a religious group to fire one of its ministers.”

This is an important ruling. The article points out how this ruling may impact some recent decisions regarding religious groups on college campuses:

If the government can’t tell a church or religious group to accept or reject a minister, he asks, “How then it can be constitutional for a public university to tell religious student groups what criteria they can and cannot use in selecting their leaders? Does this decision have a penumbra that strengthens the freedom of religious organizations more broadly? That remains to be seen–yet the language and the unanimity of the decision are encouraging.”

Kim Colby, senior counsel for the Christian Legal Society’s Center for Law and Religious Freedom, was similarly encouraged. “This decision should help religious groups that are being charged with ‘religious discrimination’ when they require their leaders to agree with their statement of faith,” she said. “In a conflict between nondiscrimination laws and religious liberty, religious liberty prevailed. Nondiscrimination laws serve vital and good purposes in our society. But they have been increasingly misused to harm religious liberty in a number of contexts over the past decade.”

The CLS lost a Supreme Court battle last year when the justices ruled 5-4 that a California law school can bar groups that require leaders to sign a statement of faith.

The battle for freedom to allow religious groups to be religious is just beginning. If I started a bridge club, I would want the people joining to be interested in playing or learning to play bridge. It makes no sense to allow someone to join a bridge club if they are only interested in playing hearts or poker (or even volleyball). That is not discrimination–it is common sense. Sometimes you have to discriminate–not because you are being unfair, but because you are protecting a common interest. A bridge club that plays hearts or poker (or volleyball) really does not make a lot of sense. 

 

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The Behind The Scenes Battle To End Obamacare

days Elena Kagan since 2010

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Rick Moran at the American Thinker posted an article today about the Department of Justice’s refusal to release documents requested by forty-nine members of Congress regarding Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan’s involvement with ObamaCare during her term as Solicitor General in the Obama Administration.

The article reports:

…Four months later the Justice Department wrote back declining to produce the documents. In that letter, Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich explained that the department has “grave concerns about the prospect of a congressional investigation into the pre-confirmation activities of a sitting Supreme Court Justice.” Justice Kagan, he added, had addressed the issue of her ObamaCare involvement during her confirmation hearings.
Since I suspect that one of the reasons Justice Kagan was nominated to the Supreme Court was her involvement in Obamacare (and I suspect the Obama administration knew ObamaCare would eventually wind up at the Supreme Court), there is no way the administration is going to do anything that might possibly cause Justice Kagan to have to recuse herself.
The article concludes:
This is crucial. If Kagan doesn’t vote, and 4 to 4 tie resulted, the vote would uphold the decision of a lower court judge that Obamacare’s individual mandate is unconstitutional. Obviously, Kagan can count noses on the court too which is why she will refuse to recuse herself.
This could be an interesting battle.

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Behind The Scenes On Obamacare

The Associated Press posted an article today on the behind the scenes activity that is taking place on Obamacare.

The article reports:

The federal government is taking on a crucial new role in the nation’s health care, designing a basic benefits package for millions of privately insured Americans. A framework for the Obama administration was released Friday.

Obamacare will be decided at the Supreme Court this session, but the government is already putting together a package of government-run healthcare.

The article reports how the government is changing the healthcare insurance industry:

Until now, designing benefits has been the job of insurers, employers and states. But the new health care law requires insurance companies to provide at least the federally approved package if they want to sell to small businesses, families and individuals through new state markets set to open in 2014.

I suppose it is nice that the government is planning ahead, but I sincerely hope that Obamacare is repealed as soon as possible. The good news is that the healthcare plans are set to start in 2014. We need to elect every Republican we can in 2012 in order to get Obamacare repealed–whether it be by Congress or the Supreme Court.

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Moving The Goalposts In The Middle Of The Game

The United States Supreme Court.

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Something important happened in the United States Senate last night. It may not be earth-shaking right now, but it could be extremely important in the coming year. Heritage.org posted the story late last night. The bottom line is that Harry Reid blocked a vote on President Obama’s jobs bill. That is not really news–the news is the way he went about blocking the bill.

The article reports the events that actually began the change in the Senate rules:

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) had pledged to offer an unchanged version of the President’s American Jobs Act as an amendment to the Currency Exchange Rate Oversight Reform Bill (S. 1619). Reid stopped a vote on the President’s so called jobs bill by filling the amendment tree.  Last year I wrote about Reid’s obstructionism and argued that Reid’s strong arm tactics by constantly filling the amendment tree as a means to block out all amendments were against the spirit and letter of the Senate’s rules.

The article further reports:

The maneuver is arcane but momentous. If a simple majority of the Senate votes with Reid and strikes down the ruling, the chamber’s precedent will be changed through the unilateral action of one party. Republicans had considered using this maneuver, dubbed the “nuclear option,” in 2005 to change Senate rules to prohibit the filibuster of judicial nominees. Democrats decried the plan and the crisis was resolved by a bipartisan agreement forged by 14 rank-and-file senators known as the Gang of 14.

This maneuver severely limits any input the minority party will have on bills brought before the Senate. I am sure there will be a lot of discussion about this move on talk radio today. In view of current events, this is a major step, but there is another aspect of this I would like to look at.

Sometime during this session of the United States Supreme Court, Obamacare will be discussed. As the Court stands right now, the decision could go either way–the deciding vote will be Justice Kennedy. If he votes to uphold Obamacare, he will have to explain why it is constitutional for the government to require every citizen to purchase health insurance. Let’s just suppose for a minute that filibusters of judicial nominees are no longer allowed in the Senate and Justice Kennedy steps down. The Obama Administration will nominate a judge who will support Obamacare and we will be stuck with national health care.

I understand that this scenario seems farfetched, but the left side of the political spectrum is rather desperate right now, and unfortunately, the left plans ahead better than the right does.

ObamaCare Is Headed To The Supreme Court

U.S. Supreme Court

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Heritage.org posted an article today about Obamacare and the recent decision by the 11th Circuit. On Monday the Department of Justice announced that it would not appeal the decision by the 11th Circuit, opening the way for Obamacare to go to the Supreme Court. However, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) is appealing the portion of the panel’s decision that held that the unconstitutional individual mandate could be severed from the Obamacare legislation.

The Washington Examiner posted a story yesterday about the progress of the lawsuits regarding Obamacare.

The article at the Washington Examiner states:

Obamacare’s fate will almost certainly be decided by the Supreme Court in 2012, either in June or shortly after November’s election. And neither conservatives nor President Obama can be sure whether they want a decision before or after the election.

The question that comes to mind here is why the Obama Administration isn’t working to slow down Obamacare’s trip to the Supreme Court. The longer it takes the Supreme Court to hear Obamacare, the more of Obamacare will already have been put in place and it will be harder to undo. The decision in the 11th Circuit is not totally negative for the Obama Administration–severing the individual mandate works for the Obama Administration–if the rest of the law stands, then they are still ahead of the game. The individual mandate was the part of the law most likely to be declared unconstitutional.

I have a few other ideas. I believe as this case moves forward, there will be an attempt to force Clarence Thomas to recuse himself from the case at the Supreme Court. There is also the fact that Elena Kagan worked on the Obamacare legislation while she was at the White House and should recuse herself from the case (I doubt that she will do that voluntarily). Obamacare at the Supreme Court is not a slam-dunk for either side, and there is a risk that the case could go either way. The other aspect of this is that if Obamacare is found unconstitutional, the Obama campaign will attempt to use its defeat as a campaign issue. Because Obamacare is overwhelmingly unpopular, I am not sure how effective it will be as a campaign issue.

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The Attack On Clarence Thomas Begins

Clarence Thomas, an alumnus of Holy Cross, for...

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Today’s New York Post posted an article by Michael Barone about the attack piece on Clarence Thomas  written by Jeffrey Toobin and publiished in the New Yorker Magazine.  Clarence Thomas has been on the Supreme Court since 1991, so why the sudden attack? Simple–Obamacare.

The interesting part of the article in the New Yorker Magazine is the fact that Jeffrey Toobin, while criticizing Justice Thomas, seems to have a lot of respect for him as a judge. The problem is simple–Justice Thomas believes in the Constitution as it was written. He makes his decisions based on the Constitution. There is no way that the idea of requiring American citizens to buy a product is in the Constitution.

The article in the New York Post concludes:

Congress has never before passed and the court has never upheld a law requiring individuals to buy a commercial product, as ObamaCare does. On this, the Obama Democrats, not Clarence Thomas or judges following his lead, are the ones sweeping aside precedent.

And that is why, as the date for the Supreme Court to begin its next session nears, the attacks on Clarence Thomas will continue and increase. If Justice Thomas cannot be forced to recuse himself from the case on Obamacare, there is a good chance that Obamacare will be overturned. If Obamacare is not overturned, the nightmare for American healthcare is only beginning.

 

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