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The Truth About the Health Care Bills

August 12, 2009

 

            Well, I have done it! I have read the entire text of proposed House Bill 3200: The Affordable Health Care Choices Act of 2009. I studied it with particular emphasis from my area of expertise, constitutional law. I was frankly concerned that parts of the proposed law that were being discussed might be unconstitutional. What I found was far worse than what I had heard or expected.

            To begin with, much of what has been said about the law and its implications is in fact true, despite what the Democrats and the media are saying. The law does provide for rationing of health care, particularly where senior citizens and other classes of citizens are involved, free health care for illegal immigrants, free abortion services, and probably forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession.

            The Bill will also eventually force private insurance companies out of business and put everyone into a government run system. All decisions about personal health care will ultimately be made by federal bureaucrats and most of them will not be health care professionals. Hospital admissions, payments to physicians, and allocations of necessary medical devices will be strictly controlled.

            However, as scary as all of that is, it just scratches the surface. In fact, I have concluded that this legislation really has no intention of providing affordable health care choices. Instead it is a convenient cover for the most massive transfer of power to the Executive Branch of government that has ever occurred, or even been contemplated. If this law or a similar one is adopted, major portions of the Constitution of the United States will effectively have been destroyed.

            The first thing to go will be the masterfully crafted balance of power between the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches of the U.S. Government. The Congress will be transferring to the Obama Administration authority in a number of different areas over the lives of the American people and the businesses they own. The irony is that the Congress doesn’t have any authority to legislate in most of those areas to begin with. I defy anyone to read the text of the U.S. Constitution and find any authority granted to the members of Congress to regulate health care.

            This legislation also provides for access by the appointees of the Obama administration of all of your personal healthcare information, your personal financial information, and the information of your employer, physician, and hospital. All of this is a direct violation of the specific provisions of the 4th Amendment to the Constitution protecting against unreasonable searches and seizures. You can also forget about the right to privacy. That will have been legislated into oblivion regardless of what the 3rd and 4th Amendments may provide.

            If you decide not to have healthcare insurance or if you have private insurance that is not deemed “acceptable” to the “Health Choices Administrator” appointed by Obama there will be a tax imposed on you. It is called a “tax” instead of a fine because of the intent to avoid application of the due process clause of the 5th Amendment. However, that doesn’t work because since there is nothing in the law that allows you to contest or appeal the imposition of the tax, it is definitely depriving someone of property without the “due process of law.

            So, there are three of those pesky amendments that the far left hate so much out the original ten in the Bill of Rights that are effectively nullified by this law. It doesn’t stop there though. The 9th Amendment that provides: “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people;” The 10th Amendment states: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are preserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” Under the provisions of this piece of Congressional handiwork neither the people nor the states are going to have any rights or powers at all in many areas that once were theirs to control.

            I could write many more pages about this legislation, but I think you get the idea. This is not about health care; it is about seizing power and limiting rights. Article 6 of the Constitution requires the members of both houses of Congress to “be bound by oath or affirmation” to support the Constitution. If I was a member of Congress I would not be able to vote for this legislation or anything like it without feeling I was violating that sacred oath or affirmation. If I voted for it anyway I would hope the American people would hold me accountable.

            For those who might doubt the nature of this threat I suggest they consult the source. Here is a link to the Constitution: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_transcript.html

            And another to the Bill of Rights: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/bill_of_rights_transcript.html

            There you can see exactly what we are about to have taken from us.

Michael Connelly

Retired attorney,

Constitutional Law Instructor

Carrollton, Texas

mrobertc@hotmail.com

 

 

           

 

 

 

If your goal truly is to better inform the public, it would be helpful if you cited the actual sections of the bill that you are using to draw your conclusions.
You comments about the 3rd and 4th Amendments seem a bit seems a bit dubious. First of all, I'm not sure how the 3rd Amendment (protection against forced quartering of soldiers) comes into play.

More importantly, the suggestion that this legislation grants the federal government access to your records is a bit off. They already have that access thanks to a whole host security and law enforcement legislation (like the Patriot Act) enacted over the past 20 years.

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Hello, Michael. Thanks for your time to read through the entire bill and for your comments and analyzations. I do have a question in regards to the possible passing of the health care reform legislation that I have yet to hear anyone address: Should Congress pass this piece of legislation, couldn't another Congress come in behind them and undo the legislation? To put it simply, if Congress passes this, can't Congress undo it? What would it take? Will the Supreme Court ultimately be called upon to hear whether or not this legislation is unconstitutional? One more question: since an individual has to have permission from the federal government to sue the federal government, how will that work with governmnet run health care? Will patients be able to sue these doctors for what will be most likely crappy practice since most of the exceptional and competent doctors will have most likely left or chosen not to enter the profession after this fiasco passes? Thank you very much.

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Thank you for spending your time, Mr. Connelly, on behalf of the American people to analyze the Health Care Reform Bill. I have been saying for some time now that the objection coming from main-stream Americans is that it does indeed feel like a take-over ... control ... and a stripping of our freedoms.

It seems that is at the root of the objections at a core level.

Here is another huge concern.

Please, GOOGLE:

H1N1 and "Swine Flu Vaccine" and Squalene and "Cytokine Storm"

Also, see my YouTube page under recent activity videos and comments section pages for further information referencing articles and websites pertaining to the concerns over the H1N1 Swine Flu Vaccine ... and further pieces to the puzzle ... enjoy connecting the dots.

May God Bless You & Yours!

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Hi Craig:
Thanks you for your comments and I will try to answer your questions. Unfortunately our Congress has a very poor record when it comes to reversing previous legislation, no matter how bad it is. Only during the years of the Reagan Administration and for a few years thereafter did Congress take steps to reverse the disasters of things like the Welfare system. In the case of the current health care proposals this could be very difficult. If Congress and the Obama administration succeed in destroying the private system of health care and insurance, which is clearly their goal, it may be virtually impossible to restore after a few years have passed. Doctors will have stopped practicing and private insurance companies will have shut down. This is precisely the situation that has occurred in Great Britain and Canada.
The government will be in control of everything relating to health care and you will only be allowed to see the doctors that the government approves. As for the Supreme Court, I don't trust them to save us. When the Obama administration decided to take control of General Motors and void private contacts in favor of giving labor unions the benefits of helping to run the company the U.S. Supreme Court refused to intervene, despite the fact that this was clearly unconstitutional. I no longer trust the court to rescue us. We must do it ourselves by keeping this legislation from ever passing. I hope this answers your questions.

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Hi Michael,
Thanks for your comments and analysis. I keep wondering what my fellow Americans are thinking when they go peacefully into the night to destruction. I wonder just what it is going to take for them to rise up like our for fathers and take a stand. We are watching as America burns down around us. Our freedoms under the constitution are only guaranteed by our willingness to stand and demand that the law be followed. We also have to start electing people who believe in the sanctity of the constitution and who will refuse to vote for bad law as our representatives. Thanks for your work and for lifting your voice to be heard.

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Thank you so much for taking your time to read the legislation, Mr. Connelly. That is more than most of our Congress members, who are trying to shove this bill down the throats of Americans, have even done. I began to read it, to try to see for myself, what is fact and what is fiction when it came to the stories going around about the translation of this bill. However, I have no experience in interpreting law, and it just all seemed confusing to me.

I am very frustrated and angry that the Obama administration and the Left are trying to take away our freedoms, and this is just the beginning. What is even more frustrating are the "sheeple" who are just following blindly and allowing the Head Marxist to turn our country into a socialist state. That is not what our great nation was founded upon! If these people want to live under socialism, then they can move to a country where it is already in effect. But don't try to change MY country to be like the rest of the world!

I want to be more informed and know what specific wording in the bill means and how it can be interpreted. Is it true that, like in the UK, if you are young with lung cancer, you will get treatment quicker than if you are an old person with lung cancer? That they put a value on your life dependent upon your age and how much more you can contribute to society? What of these stories (that the Left are calling "scare tactics") are really true and what are exaggerations of the wording in the bill? I want to be able to defend myself when standing up against this health care reform, but simply don't know what is really the truth anymore. Do you know what we, as simple citizens, can do to prove to the lemmings that this is a bad idea?

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Good points Gretchen and the key is to continue making these points to everyone you know and getting the word out. The tremendous rresponse I'm getting to my articles shows that are most people are willing to listen and learn.

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Republicans are saying that, “the United States has the best quality of care and the best access to care in the world”. The truth is that, according to the World Health Organization in an analysis of 109 health care systems, the U.S. ranks 37th (between Costa Rica and Slovenia) in overall health care performance. In terms of access, all other industrialized countries have universal health coverage meaning 100% access while in the U.S. a minimum of 15% to 20% of Americans have no access at all and many more are underinsured. In addition, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Americans have access to fewer health care resources than people in most other OECD countries, measured in three major categories: hospital beds per capita, physicians and nurses per capita, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) scanners per capita.
Republicans and Blue Dog Democrats repeatedly express concern over the cost of universal health coverage. The truth is that without universal coverage Americans are paying more than citizens of other countries and we are getting less. U.S. citizens spent $5,267 per capita for health care in 2002—53 percent more than any other country. According to the World Health Organization, the U.S. ranks 2nd among nations in the amount of GDP spent on health care. Republicans also fail to note what the cost to taxpayers will be if we fail to provide universal coverage. People still get sick and need health care. Ultimately, who will pay the cost of care for people who cannot pay for it themselves?
Republicans fear that mandating universal coverage would “likely mean that” many businesses would stop providing health insurance coverage for their employees forcing their employees to enroll in the ‘public’ option. The truth is that, the rising cost of health care premiums has forced a growing number of businesses to stop providing health care coverage to their employees. Those employees have great difficulty and often cannot obtain individual insurance. In 2007, 60% of employers offered group coverage, down from 69% in 2000. The number of uninsured rose to 46.6 million, up from 44.8 million in 2005. At least, if health care reform legislation includes a ‘public’ option, employees in these circumstances will have somewhere to turn.
Republicans contend that should employers choose to stop offering health care insurance as an employee benefit, the employees will lose the health care plan they like. This is already a fact of life for most Americans. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2008, only 12.4 percent of employed wage and salary workers were Union members. Employees not represented by a Union have no say in what health care coverage plan or provider is selected by their employer or control over what percentage of the premium the employee will be expected to pay and when or if that percentage will change, or whether coverage offered by the plan will be reduced or changed.
Republicans admit that “our nation’s health care system needs drastic reforms.” Their solution is the free marketplace. Isn’t that what we already have?
Among the “market-based reforms” Republicans propose is “allowing” Americans to have health savings accounts to enable Americans to purchase their own health care insurance. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, the average cost of premiums for single coverage in 2008 is $392 per month or $4,704 per year. The average cost of premiums for family coverage is $1,057 per month or $12,680 per year. How many families do you know who can save $12,680 per year? The median income in Florida is $46,142. Thus half the families in Florida could expect to pay a minimum of slightly more than one-quarter (27.4%) of their income for health insurance coverage alone. That is assuming the unlikely probability that individual insurance premiums will be equal to those awarded to businesses with greater bargaining power.
Republicans also recommend “Curbing frivolous malpractice lawsuits”. The OECD compared malpractice costs in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia because all four countries have legal systems rooted in British law and manage malpractice claims through a British-style tort system. According to the OECD, malpractice payments represent less than 0.5% of health care spending in all four countries. Also, malpractice costs measured on a per capita basis show that the cost of malpractice lawsuits to the health care system is only slightly higher in the U.S. ($16 per capita in 2001, compared with $12 in the United Kingdom, $10 in Australia, and $4 in Canada).
Republicans tell us, “Tort reform could save billions of dollars that are wasted each year in defensive medicine.” Because malpractice spending is such a small percentage of overall health care spending (0.5%), it does not account for how much more Americans are paying for an inferior health care system. Granting that it is difficult to identify what is defensive medicine and what is appropriate, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that "savings from defensive medicine would be small" following tort reform.
In some other countries nonemergency medical procedures often have waiting lists effectively rationing health care. Republicans propose that in order to contain costs, Americans should ration their own health care. The truth is, these procedures account for only 3 percent of health spending and do not account for the wide disparity of health care costs in the U.S. and abroad. The OECD concludes that as research has repeatedly shown that “the prices of care, not the amount of care delivered, are the primary difference between the United States and other countries. These higher prices are increasingly making health care unaffordable for many Americans. Equally troubling, the more-costly U.S. health care has not resulted in demonstrably better technical quality of care or better patient satisfaction with care. Future U.S. policies should focus on the prices paid for health services and on improving the quality of those services. “
Republicans and Blue Dog Democrats are most concerned about the cost of health care reform and that it will add substantially to the deficit. Republicans are concerned that taxes will be increased to pay for health care reform. In order to pay for health care reform without adversely affecting the deficit, Democrats in Congress have proposed a tax increase on only 2% to 3% of Americans. Like Republicans, I also believe that reform is necessary. Unlike Republicans, I don’t believe in free lunches or free-loading. I am far from being in that 2%-3% likely to see my taxes increased. However, if I have to pay more in taxes so that all Americans have access to good quality health care, I’m more than willing to pay my fair share. That is what true American independence means; standing on one’s own two feet and paying one’s own way.
Republicans are defrauding their constituents by telling lies about health care reform. Republicans have failed to put forth a real alternative. Republicans are denying us the right to make an educated decision about a very serious pocketbook issue by obscuring the facts. When are Republican voters going to insist that Republicans stop worrying about the next election and start doing their job which ought to be representing the best interests of their constituents right now -- not lying to us!!!!!!!

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I appreciate your analysis, Michael. You should know that your blog has been circulating heavily through email (that is how I received a copy).

I am an attorney as well, and have long been concerned about the Federal government's ever-extending reach. Many of the claims you make are extreme, however, and I would like to echo "Michael's" unanswered request that you cite the portions of the bill(s) that support your contentions that : "The law does provide for rationing of health care, particularly where senior citizens and other classes of citizens are involved, free health care for illegal immigrants, free abortion services, and probably forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession."

I thought Kristofer also made a good point about the many amendments that have occurred since the draft you apparently read. Do these amendments alter your analysis, at least about the contentions you made in the above quote? There is not much point to objecting to a version of the bill that is no longer in contention.

I look forward to your responses to these two requests. Thanks!

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For many years I was busy raising my family while my taxes were PAYING our representatives to 'represent' us. Now I understand why we have to be diligent in watching over these people who want to control every aspect of our lives. The final bill that is written should be made available to the public timely and not changed in the dead of night after it has gone to a vote. This practice is dishonest and deceitful. They do not want people to know for what they are voting. I will never be silent again, nor will I ever rely on anything our lawmakers say as truth. I will find out myself and speak out every chance I get. "The only way for evil to succeed is for good men to remain silent."

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What a nightmare we are stuck within.

The fact that something this....well, evil...has made it so close to law is a reason to despair.

We've got to KILL THIS IDEA. Keep writing (on real paper, not only email) and calling your Senators and Congressmen. Don't let up for a second.

Fight. Fight. Fight.

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Michael,

Thank you for taking the time to write up your analysis of HR 3200. I am not a lawyer. I'm just your average American citizen trying to muddle my way through this nightmare.

I am keeping myself informed mostly through FOX News, but I am very distressed that this bill has come so far so fast. From what I have been able to ferret out, I don't think anyone in Congress actually wrote this bill, but an outside and invisible group. Much like the Stimulus bill was written by the far-left group The Apollo Alliance. My first question is , is this legal? How can Congress take bills from outside and push them through? I do not think the Founding Fathers intended for an unknown, outside group would have this kind of power. And why isn't this information more widely known?

I write letters to my representatives. I call, I email and I plan on protesting this September 12th. I tell my friends and collogues. With the mass media forwarding Obama’s agenda and refusing to act as a Free Press and thus the watchdog for the general public, I am further distressed that the truth about what is happening is not getting to average Americans. The far-left Progressives only represent a small portion of the American people, so why is it that they have so much power?

My second question is, what can we, The People, do to stop this? Not just this bill, but all the other attempts to transform our great Country into a second-rate Orwellian State where the elite ignore the Constitution and do whatever they please, as long as it forwards their hidden agenda? Is there any legal action that can be taken to stop this and to reverse what is going on? Is there any legal group that can take on a Class Action suit to get us back to our Constitution and our Rights restored?

Thank you again for your efforts.

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I too am thankful that someone has read the thing since my legislators do not. I would like to see the parts you quote from and have link to it as well.
Thank you

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Ok so you still didn't answer the first posters question bud. Where are the actual sections in the bill that lead you to this conclusion. You are expecting people to follow your annalysis blindly without providing citations so that your argument can be verified. That's like showing up for court charging someone with murder but having no evidence to prove your case. Only your word against his. I think as a lawyer you should know better than this. So why don't you give us some references in the bill to validate your argument?

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Thanks to everyone for your comments and interest. Even when people disagree with me I appreciate what they have to say if it is done in a respectful manner. This nation was built on the right to disagree.
It is difficult to cite specific sections of HR 3200 for several reasons. First, much of what I refer to as being done by the bill may not be in just one particular section. Instead the preparers attempt to hide their actual intent by spreading things throughout the bill in different sections. Second, any specific section I refer to by number may change as the Congress returns from recess and starts trying to rework the bill to make it seem more reasonable to the American people. In other words, what is contained in Section 1173A that provides for government electronic access to private information may be renumbered and contain something totally different tomorrow.
However, here are some of the most pertinent sections dealing with some of the areas you are asking about. Section 113 gives the government control over all health insurance, private and public. Section 141 authorizes the appointment of the Health Choices Administrator. He or she will answer to no one other than the President. Sections 201 and 203 give this person the power to decide what benefits you can get in your insurance, whether public or private. This opens the door for health care rationing. This is further mandated by Section 225 that gives the administrator complete control over hospitals and doctors. It sets the fees that can be charged and the services that can be provided.
If the Administrator decides you didn’t need to be hospitalized the hospital can be fined for “breaking the government rules.” This also opens the door for the Administrator to force hospitals and physicians to perform abortions. All health procedures will mandated by the government. There is also no provision for services to be provided only to citizens or legal residents of the United States. This means that since illegal aliens get the services now, they will continue to do so.
Here is a link to the entire bill and you can look up these and other provisions: http://thomas.loc.gov/. I hope you find this helpful

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I believe it is people like you who are inciting this nation to react before having the true facts. You seem to have a lot of criticism, but no answers. Please give this a chance and get all the facts of the FINAL Health Care package before expressing your opinions. I am tired of this nation being pulled apart. We need unity and solutions if we are to survive and thrive.

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MC:
Thanks for your ongoing effort to raise awareness about this Bill and alerting all that it will allow the current Administration to virtually takeover the U.S. healthcare industry.

In addition to all the dangerous language inserted into this Bill, I am equally bothered that our Congress continues to spend money that it does not have on things it cannot fix.

Congress, this Administration and it's followers have squandered most of the wealth of the U.S. in the first half of this year on Stimulus, GM, etc-- this final theft of the healthcare industry will truly bankrupt our children's generation.

"HOPE for CHANGE in 2010".

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Most of us know by gut feel that this "reform" is going to finish destroying what is left of our Constitution, bankrupting our country, and taking away individual freedoms. It's good that there are smart people out there, taking the time to do our representatives jobs for them, giving specific grounds for those gut feelings, and keeping this debate going. The worst thing that could happen is that Congress does not take time to debate and deliberate before they decide anything. THERE IS NO BIG RUSH TO DO THIS! Also, whatever this program's proponents say their program will do or not do, it will not remain that way: Take a look at what Social Security was when the great socialist, FDR, started it, and what it is now. Want more of that? I personally wish the government would get out of my life and my wallet--that's what the Constitution was written for, to protect individuals from the government, not to provide for the general welfare at the cost of nearly everything else. Most Federal programs in existence today are beyond the scope of the delegated powers; they exist only under that vague clause, "promote the general welfare." Americans of all political persuasions need to be careful what we ask for, because we might get it.

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What are your thoughts about the president's speech from last night?

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Thank you so much for your hard work and thank you for the links!
My Father was a US serviceman for 20 years (Not an officer) and I know first hand what it is like to have government healthcare! I do not want it! Ever!

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Dear Mr. Connelly,

Alas, we Americans have allowed ourselves to deteriorate into xenophobic sheep, perpetually distracted by text messaging and NFL games. Most of us rarely travel to Europe, suspecting that the world is flat and that sea serpents lurk off the Atlantic seaboard. If we would occasionally make our way there, we would get a peek into the future and return with a renewed appreciation for what you are warning us about. Euro-socialism is grim, indeed, and we mistakenly flirt with it by electing leftist Presidents and vacuous Congressmen. At some point, we must face reality and shift our nomenclature for socialism to what it really is—Marxism. Karl Marx’ Manifest der Kommunistischen Parte of 1848, with its ten steps for communizing a nation, would be chilling reading for the remaining Americans who can still read and write and carry a thought to its rational conclusion.

Respectfully submitted,

Warren Donworth

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You sir are a GODDAMN LIAR! Just like Joe Wilson is a disgrace, so are you. This is a big lie. In HB3200 it specifically says no funding for abortion. If you had read the bill you would know that. Therefore the only conclusion I can come to is that your a GODDAMN LIAR!

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The word abortion is not in the bill!!!!!!!

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Wow John - could you be any more disrespectful? That is a big part of the problem with this country. Please provide the section that disputes Mr. Connelly's assertion that abortion would be paid for. It is a moral issue for me and I should not be forced to pay for it thru my taxes so I would hope it specifically states they would not be funded with my tax dollars.
As far as healthcare reform, I believe something needs to be done but I completely disagree with how Congress is forcing it and rushing it. You can't rush something this big thru. Tort reform needs to be tackled first. Doctors are not infallible so to further protect themselves they order numerous tests that are not needed driving up the costs, frivilous lawsuits costing millions drive up costs - get that under control first. Then tackle the insurance companies. It has been stated that 38% of what we pay is for profit and overhead costs. They are pocketing more and paying out less. Perfect example - last year between myself and my employer we paid over $18K in healthcare premiums - just premiums, not co-pays - the insurance company paid out less then $1K on my entire family. I switched to an HSA which is saving me thousands every year as my family is healthy - I want to be assured I won't lose that right. Having to satisfy a deductible before running to the ER for a runny nose should curb the abuse of the ER. Annual physicals are paid for 100% without having to satisfy a deductible so unless you get sick enough to visit the urgent care, you shouldn't have big expenses. The urgent care is only $64 on my HSA whereas I paid a $30 co-pay before but a whole heck of a lot more in premiums. The money I am saving on premiums goes into a health savings account that I use to pay for it. You don't lose it at the end of the year and you can invest it. Change employers? Take it with you - you own it! We need more people taking control of thier own personal misuse of doctors and hospitals - you don't need to run to the ER because you have a cold! Abuse of the system adds to problem.
As I have pointed out there are many ways to bring down the costs - not just by taking over the industry and forcing it down our throats.

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MM
The fact is our forefathers fought/died over 3% which was the highest tax imposed on them by Great Britian prior to 1776. The fact is for those of us fortunate to currently have an income the majority of us are paying more than 25% tax to the current federal government. The fact is this very government has an ever increasing deficiet with no end in site. The fact is we have one of if not the highest corporate tax rates in the world. The fact is there is no penalty for frivilous/bogus lawsuit...no skin in the game for trial lawyers. The fact is this bill is designed to go in to effect in 2013...four years from now...not urgent. Most likely if it were not for people such as Michael the first draft would be the FINAL health care package already passed by house and senate. The fact is the unemployment rate continues to rise. Are you being truthful saying that what Michael is doing is pulling this nation apart? If so, provide fact if not merely your opinion.

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John, (24) I am not a lawyer but I do understand that in legal terms what is not specifically stated can and is implied. The Republicans have been trying to get an insert into the bills specifically banning abortion; however, as of now, to no avail.
For those of you concerned about the 10th Amendment,do not forget about education. Too many rules and policies have become mill stones around the neck of educators just as these health bills will become detriments to our welfare. I, too, have lived in Europe.
I do thank you, Mr. Connelly, for your efforts and I do feel strongly that we need to start removing some of the untouchables in Congress

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Mike,
I hope you sent this to O'Rielly,Hanity and Beck.
Earl

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I've read everything the government has released on this topic to date. You are so off base it's embarrassing. I can't believe I'm validating your existence, maybe I'm writing this in the hopes that those who read this blog will be seeded with the doubt they need to not trust one source. Certainly one so close minded about the subject.

Please, go lock yourself in a closet until this is over so the stupid Americans that believe everything they read won't be swayed by your rubbish. Manipulating them is the way to an illegitimate goal, not honest or truthful in any respect. But then again, you claim to be a lawyer so I couldn't expect anything better I suppose.

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I am an accountant for the State where I live, not an attorney, so please forgive my ignorance regarding the law. I am up on my reporting responsibilities for the Stimulus Package because of the 9 conferences I have had to attend since March, 2009 and still the changes and clarifications come fast and furious every day via e-mail and snail mail (it is the Government, after all). But, I have read this bill, along with the incredible number of hyper-links attached to the on-line version to provide clarification. It occurs to me, a month down the road, that I have wasted my time. This is not even the real Bill! While I am not a fan of sequels, I think we need a "Kill Bill" 2, 3, 4, 5...

I am increasingly convinced that this is one more smoke screen. This Administration seems to be very apt at creating drama on the surface while, at the same time, steadily disassembling the Constitution beneath the surface. My deepest concern is that we have seen the next to the last, if not the last, election our Country will see. My hope is in the Town Hall Meetings and the Tea Party Movement. Perhaps the people will rise up and reclaim what is ours, but it is frightening to see. The dissent is "allowed" but, they are not listening, they are not hearing.

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Michael,
Once again, thank you for delving into the proposed legislation. To MM, if we wait until the final health care package is done, there will be very little time for us to let our Representatives know what we do and don't support. They represent US whether we voted for them or not. We need to know exactly what to ask them to support as well as what we would like for them to not support.

Michael, doesn't this (especially the information/privacy portions) wipe out the HIPAA laws that are currently in place, protecting our medical records from being accessed by anyone other than ourselves?

I've written to all 3 of my Representatives. One of them is on the Senate Finance Committee. (I'm in NM.) I tried to be as specific as possible, letting them know the parts that I do support and what I don't support. (I looked up HR3200 online to try to get as much information as possible.)
Whew, that was difficult to do! (No, I've not read the entire proposed bill.)

Question: As amendments are made to the bill, are the changes posted to the online version that we can access?

Question: If something in this legislation does nullify an existing Constitutional Amendment, is this seen as a NEW amendment, subject to the procedures in Article V of the Constitution? (2/3's of the Congress approval or 2/3 of State Legislatures.)

I know that this is asking a lot but I sense that you might be up to it...

We need to act. Rather than just say "NO to health care reform!" at the top of our lungs, we need to be specific.

We (those of us opposed to this massive 1000+ page piece of legislation) need someone to pen a draft of a letter to send to our Representatives as well as President Obama -- something that cites specific issues that we are opposed to and why. (Similar to what you've written so far.) If we had a template of sorts that outlines the critical issues (Medical records privacy, Government being able to make medical decisions rather than our Doctors, Inclusion/Exclusion of illegal immigrants etc.) then we'd be able to speak intelligently.

In correspondence to our Representatives, we can then include or exclude pieces that express our individual opinions. (For example, I am for the elimination of pre-existing conditions clauses for individual health insurance policies and am for mandatory insurance, at least at a minimal level.)

I've talked to many people who are frustrated and mad and who are opposed to many (if not most) of the proposed health care legislation. Yes, many have signed electronic petitions. That isn't going to get anything done though.
Most have not contacted anyone to tell them how they feel. Why? because they don't know what to say.

The AMA has endorsed "Obama Care" yet I've not spoken to one doctor who agrees with it. I called my insurance broker as well as the group that provides our health care. I asked them "What can I do?" I'm not getting any answers other than "Let your Congressmen know that you oppose the bill." That isn't going to cut it. That is what makes us appear to be "sheeple", chanting "no, no, noooo."

If we had a template of-sorts available; one from a reliable source; one that contains facts, then we could pass that on to like-minded citizens so that we could all let our representatives know how we expect them to vote.

To everyone here who is concerned, please do the best that you can to let your voice be heard in a calm, rational, fact-based way. Write to your Congress-people. Write to the President.

Sorry for going on so -- this is a huge issue that not only concerns health care. We need to take it one step at a time though.

I don't think that most people realize what a miracle it is that we have our Country. I would recommend that others review how and why our Country was founded. (Not to promote another Author's work but everyone should read "1776" and "John Adams" by David McCullough to get a refresher-course in US History.)

Michael Connelly, I will definitely start reading your books! Thank you for starting this dialogue.

Comment

Republican blogs, Conservative talk radio, and Faux news always do their best to scare people. Take off your blinders, cite specific sections so that you can be rebutted, or shut it. At a time when we need people to work together, we have people like you being divisive. No wonder we can never get anything done.

Comment

I would like to see some sources for the things you said, specifically citations of the specific portions of the bill that name/seem to imply these things. I have no time to read a 1000-page bill, but would definitely like to verify the information.

Thanks,
Liberty from Teenage Politics

Comment

are you people "brain-dead" or just "brain-washed" by the conservative movement? has anyone else who has commented read any of the bill? has anyone else even cared to pay attention to the facts as opposed to what people like Michael Connelly tell you in their "anti-anything that doesn't benefit them specifically" blog rants? has common sense become a lost function in conservative america? why would destroying the system benefit anybody? how is obama "just another person looking for a hanout"? he and most other people in office have worked their asses off to get where they are. i will admit that politics can be easy to get into with fame or connections, after all voting was really never more than a popularity contest. did anyone, outside of washington, in 1860 know what abraham lincoln's policies were? no. did obama have previous fame? no. connections or family in politics? no. he worked his ass off just like anyone else and yet he's treated by conservatives like he's done something wrong. he was just a man who got into politics and happened to become the president of the united states. why would he benefit from destroying health-care? i can promise you he has health insurance and i can also promise that he isn't on welfare. why would he benefit? he wouldn't. the world isn't out to get you or anyone else. the system isn't set up to make your life terrible. in fact it's just the opposite. this health-care bill is to help people who cant afford health insurance. are there people taking advantage of the system? yes, but get over it that's nothing new. you only think it's new because the conservative mentality is that "if it doesn't benefit you than why bother. in fact we should fight against it." is your money, the small amount of taxes you'll have to pay, more important than a human life? is that how self-centered this country is becoming? are you all so blind that you would complain about the fact that the health-care benefits may not extend to certain groups? are you not understanding the fact that this only applies to those who wouldn't have had health-care to begin with, and are therefor in the same situation they are in under the current system? why, at this point, are people so selfish, so ignorant, so arrogant that they refuse to listen to reason. for, where would we be without logic and rationalization? i think most of the people viewing this post, if it isn't deleted by the stubborn blog writer, need to take a step back and walk into situations without an opinion. and once you're well informed, make your own. please don't take the word of every "seeming to be" professional out there. you owe yourself and everybody you later rant to this much. thanks.

Comment

Wow, Aaron! I appreciate your passion. Although I can't speak for everyone who has commented, I have read the most updated version of the bill. I'm not a lawyer, so I'm sure there are things I didn't properly understand, but it was surprisingly comprehensible, although l-o-n-g!
I'm guessing that most people here get their news and information from a number of sources, not just this blog. And I think you're missing the point...the real danger of this bill is the already-over-long-arm of the federal government. The Founders of our system of government and their peers fought a 10 year battle for (forgive the caps) the RIGHT of SELF GOVERNMENT. What this means is that WE THE PEOPLE govern ourselves. The seemingly most important thing to the framers of the U.S. Constitution is Article 1 Section 1 which states basically that no law shall be made in this country except by lawfully elected representatives in the House and Senate (and the lawmaking ability given the states, naturally).
The problem with this health care bill is just an extension or a representation of what's been going wrong for over 100 years.
Firstly, our elected officials in Congress, for the most part, refuse to listen to us, thinking they know what's good for us -or they know what serves their OWN interests more.
Secondly, we the people have allowed these bandits to steal our Constitutional freedoms little by little, to our great shame. Executive Order, bureaucracies (like the EPA) making law, and our runaway judiciary legislating from the bench are all examples of violations of the Constitution.
Thirdly, government schools (you know them as the public school system) teach versions of history that in some cases bear little resemblance to what I learned in the same schools 40 years ago. They almost never teach the basics of our nation's founding documents. Sadly, they focus less and less on academics at all, all of this according to my cousin, who has been a public school English and history teacher for the past 40 years.
The Bible says the people perish for lack of knowledge. You may not appreciate the Book, but there's no denying the truth of that statement.
I need to stop talking and give someone else a chance, so finally, please understand it's not about the money--it's about principles. The Framers of the Constitution wanted to make sure the U.S. Gov't didn't become so big it outweighed the states, but it's happened. If the proposed health care legislation goes through it will give the federal gov't control of another, conservatively, one-sixth of the economy, and it's only ONE of the frightening things the current adminsitration is attempting, if not doing.
I could go on, but I just want to add that my family can't afford the $2,500 monthly premium for health insurance and so we don't have it. Yep, I have several chronic health problems and no insurance. And I am dead set against this bill. I hope that, at least, says something to you, Aaron.
And I do appreciate that you took the time to write your thoughts, really!

Comment

John-#24 who cursed God and then had the nerve to use disgrace aganist Joe Wilson. Everyone one has Freedom of Speech, but respect should be in the response. Just wanted you to know your response means nothing, and it shows your limited vocabulary.

I have worked in hospitals and treated patients with supreme care. The physicians provide this same treatment. For those that think care is not provided now, just wait till the Govenment Health Care Bill passes. Folks are thinking that they can still receive insurance from their employer. This is true now, but where is it in the Constitution that private companies will always have to insure their employees. Some companies have already stopped offering a plan. Eventually, all of them will stop insuring the employees. Why should they cover the employees? There will be a government plan to insure all.

This is also going to cause patients to receive little care if any. Let the Democrats handle this and it will show you their limited knowledge.

Comment

If I understand correctly Donna, this bill will only require insurance coverage for everyone, which is even more than Obama's original plan, if you go and read his book (The Audacity of Hope) and his campaign website. His plan was only to require children to have coverage, but Congress has taken it one step further.

I do not like the way this bill is set out, but I'd still like some sources for the things Mr. Connelly claimed about this bill. I'm one of those 'verify at all costs' people. ;)

I think that the government as well as the everyday people have some misconceptions about healthcare. Insurance companies are really messing over the everyday person, and don't really do much more than this bill would. They decide what care a person will get (something the government will not do under this bill), they can deny care (something the government will not do), and they charge outrageous amounts of money for it (something the government may or may not do.)

I agree that the Constitutional bounds on this issue are a bit shaky, and it has been argued both ways- that it is Constitutional, and that it is not. Since Congress has already trespassed against that document manymany times, I think it's a bit late to be throwing a temper tantrum now. But I think that if we really want healthcare to be left to the people, and we want costs to go down (it is a fact that costs are extremely high at this time) then we've got to educate people. Most people don't realize that insurance companies are really at fault here- combined with the outrageous regulations the government has placed on them in some cases.

I suggest watching Michael Moore's 'Sicko'. It's a liberal movie, yes, but it does have some good information, and balanced out with other sources, it can be quite a learning experience.

Comment

Good points. I think we should have actual citations from the bill introduced in a post that would give the argument much more weight. From an economic perspective you already know there will be rationing of care, destruction of private insurance, etc. There is no way out of that. Also, could you post a link to the actual bill? I would like to give it a read. Thanks

Comment

Are you able to provide hyperlinks from each of the key points to the proof text in the bill??

Comment

As for constitutionality, I believe that written constitutions are not intended to protect anyone's rights, but to provide a self-justifying legal wedge with which legislatures can chisel their way into their constituents' private lives and property. A free people do not need a piece of paper defining their freedom, and if anyone proffers such a piece of paper as an alleged bulwark against tyranny then their motivations should be automatically suspected.

Besides all the legal and constitutional arguments, there is also the question of why a nation which is already insolvent and nearing the point of having to renege on its loans or massively devalue its currency, would react by putting the pedal to the metal and drastically INCREASING spending. It is not just foolhardy but suicidal. At the risk of invoking whatsisname's law of internet debate, I would like to point out that this kind of suicidal tilting at windmills, both domestic and foreign, was the hallmark of government policies in Germany and Japan in the 1930s and 1940s. But I will admit that right up until the moment of the collapse of these regimes, the people who promoted these suicidal policies did benefit enormously from them in terms of power, perks and money.

Comment

What portions of the Constitution are left to destroy? Talk about closing the barn door after the horses have gotten out. But, alas, it couldn't end any other way as oooo noooo presciently revealed the true nature of the beast.

Comment

Here is a web-site link to my blog. I served as a soldier and a police officer. I also was sworn to defend, protect and serve.

I am against the healthcare reform as I also see it as stripping away our liberties.

Please read my blog and see how we agree on the subject. Leave a comment. I wish everyone would see what they are doing to themselves and to society as it can not be reversed once it (healthcare) is in place.

http://chrisitanamericanpatriots.ning.com/profiles/blogs/the-future-of-american

GOD BLESS!

Comment

Seccession is the solution!

Comment

If the current or any future health care reform bill that is proposed in Congress could deliver health care to everyone at a less cost, on time, with full choice of providers and no limits on benefits I would still be opposed to it. It is not the business of the Federal, state or local governments to provide health care in any way, shape or form.

From that great liberal city of Madison Wisconsin

Comment

Insurance companies will not have to compete with each other if it is mandated for all. It makes for a captive audience. We will have no choice at all.

The excuse for mandating health care is the likes of the law that requires hospitals treat patients regardless of their ability to pay. This gives people the argument that lack of insurance increases costs for everyone, but it is only that way because government mandated it. That was an early step in take over of every aspect of our lives. If everyone suffers because you don't have insurance, we'll mandate insurance. Now your decision to ride motorcycles or play contact sports may be curbed as your potential injuries will cost the rest of us.

People think health care is a right. How can anyone have the right to the talents and efforts of doctors? Don't doctors have rights too? Or are they our slaves?

Comment

Michael, you said your comments on the 3rd Amendment are based on Griswold v. Connecticut (1965) case.

I'm not convinced you're actually a constitutional scholar. Griswold said that privacy, while not specifically mentioned in the constitution, could be found in the penumbras of the various texts within.

With regard to the Third Amendment, they said "The Third Amendment, in its prohibition against the quartering of soldiers "in any house" in time of peace without the consent of the owner, is another facet of that privacy."

Now, no constitutional scholar would say that a potential violation of privacy afforded by the constitution would be a violation of the 3rd Amendment merely because the SCOTUS referred to an inherent protection of privacy in the 3rd Amendment. That's unsound analysis.

Comment

Here is the link provided by THOMAS (the Library of Congress searchable website) for the bill:

http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.uscongress/legislation.111hr3200

Comment

The other constitutional problem with obligatory insurance is the contracts clause of the 13th Amendment Reynolds vs United States ruled that the government cannot coerce a citizen into entering into a contract which is what insurance is. The "wheel of servitude" was defined in this SCOTUS case.
Unlike auto insurance. Mandatory health insurance is levied on people for being alive. There is no "Right to Drive". But I thought there was a "Right to Life".

Comment

I'm interested in reading views opposed to mine, but this part lost my attention with this article. Could you please clarify on your basis for this comment please because this strikes me as blatant scaremongering.

"and probably forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession."

Coming from a country with universal health, which I rate highly, I have never heard of anyone being forced to have an abortion. Nor have I heard about this in any other first world nation with universal health.

Also from the same paragraph:
"free health care for illegal immigrants, free abortion services"

Clarification has already been made by Obama that illegal immigrants do not get free health care, any more than the current US system which are obligated to treat anyone in an emergency. The mention of abortion is sidestepping the important topic here and is playing on those who oppose abortion, but it makes no difference if this is paid for by universal health care or insurance companies - it's the same source of funds. The only difference is universal health don't skim large amounts off the top first.

My objection is purely because of my lack of trust for insurance companies, which I rate far lower than any US administration. These purely profit driven companies account for much of the reason the US has by far the highest GDP spent on health and why so many Americans are in debt, of which health care is easily the biggest contributor.

I have a close friend in the US who pays a considerable amount to health insurance, yet has been left in thousands of dollars of debt despite this, and that's just for the scans. Plus future insurance costs are affected, likely rejected for similar reoccurance of ill health, and employ people to find ways of canceling policies when people get sick to the extent of paying them bonuses.

I'd really like to hear rational counterpoints to the clearly flawed insurance system and proposed alternatives to even contemplate changing my standpoint on this issue.

Comment

I'm not sure I get your point Bryan. In his opinion William Douglas said the right to privacy could be found in penumbras of the texts of the 1st, 3rd, 5th, and 9th amendment and were applicable to the states under the 14th Amendment. I didn't refer to the privacy issue as originiating in the 3rd Amendment, but if the court has ruled that it comes from that text among others, it stands to reason that if the right to privacy is threatened, all the language in amendments that form its basis is also threatened.
As for citing section numbers, I posted a response to that issue on this blog (see post 17). In the case of paying for abortions and care for illegals that the Democrats say is not going to happen under the provisions of the bill; why do the Democrats in the House continue to block every effort to specifically include those prohibitions?

Comment

Hi Michael~

First of all, thank you for posting this. In spite of the few negative comments from people who will probably never understand, you are a doing a great service to our country by making us more aware.

I would like to make a suggestion, so that when people view your site who may question your motives and ask for "sections" to be listed- it might behoove you to edit your original post, included an "edited date" at the very bottom - and include your response that you had posted under the comment section listing the House Bill 3200 section references as well as the paragraph you wrote explaining how these references may change as the bill is rewritten... especially how vaguely illegal immigrants were written in and what it does and doesn't imply. Include why don't they write in into the bill more specifically? That way if the reader does not know how to access the "comments" section (as a few of my friends did not know there were other sections) then they will see the Bill section references at the end of each of your Blog Entry posts.

Just a suggestion. Again, thank you for taking the time to write. You are a very honorable man! :)

Comment

if you really read this bill, even though you mention violations to our privacy in a general sense, how did you not specifically mention the Section entitled:
National Device Registry??? IT MAKES PROVISIONS FOR MICROCHIPPING US! Did you miss that somehow while you were reading the whole thing? Or just not think it important?

Comment

To MM: Mr Connelly is not the problem. He is not dividing this country. He cannot "wait" for the "real" bill to come to fruition and THEN analyze the consequences of the various provisions. Given this congress, the bill will come out; it will not be available in print; and the Democrats will vote it in before even THEY have read it, much less anyone else.

NOW is the time to look at provisions in THIS bill, because many will no doubt be in whatever other bill is written.

Comment

I am praying that if this ugly monster of a bill passes, that Constitutionalist attorneys will band together some how to keep on and keep on challenging its provisions in the courts until it is clearly shown to be inimical to our Constitution and to our nations heritage.

Although my wife and I, Christian missionaries, could discuss a dozen ways this legislation, if passed, will all but destroy our present ministry and labors (we self-insure, and that successfully), our chief concern is the damage it does to the very foundations and insistitutions of a free society.

Comment

me #51- that section is not what it you make it out to be. It is in fact merely making provisions for a database of pacemakers and the like. I have read the entire section. And lest we forget: such a database already exists. Several databases like this already exist.

The insurance companies have your infomation, and it is kept in a database. The government already knows all about you, from your social security number, your birth certificate records, and (guess who) the insurance companies. The government could gain that info from the ins. companies in a New York minute if they wanted it.

One thing that really bugs me, and this is a bit OT- President Obama's ultimate plan is a single-payer system. He has said so in various places, including his book The Audacity of Hope. I don't understand why he won't just out and say so now, when he doesn't have much to lose. I might actually be able to get behind such a plan if it seemed right to me, but his lying and cowering behind the (very thin) facade of Constitutionality is not becoming or honest in any way.

Comment

Here's my point Michael: are you saying that if Congress were to pass a bill that flew in the face of 14th amendment privacy jurisprudence, that as a result Congress would be able to quarter soldiers in my home?

Otherwise, my point was that you're adding references to multiple amendments under the guise of "privacy" in order to fluff up the areas in which you think this bill is unconstitutional.

Comment

To "me": The Device Registry is already in place (and has been for some time.) This is for all devices that are put into someone's body. This includes things like joint replacements, pins to fix broken bones, mechanical heart valves and even breast implants. (I'm not sure about dental implants.) In case there is a recall or a product problem, the individuals with the devices can be notified.
This is a great example of how wild rumors can get started.

Comment

Are there illegals in this country. Yes. Do they get health care? Yes. Where? ERs. I lived in Houston recently for five years and I remember seeing them get admitted for treatment while I sat there for six hours with a RUPTURED APPENDIX! They cannot be denied care due to not having ID.

So many of you say this bill does not specifically cover illegals? Well, since it does not EXCLUDE them, it WILL cover them.

How immature are you people that think this government wants to protect you? They just want to enhance their voting bloc. Wake up before it is too late.

God bless the USA

Comment

You claim that there is now there is no provision for excluding illegal immigrants yet section 242 seems to cover that ( from the link you gave in comment 17)

Comment

I am very appreciative of your professional insight.
I hope you don't mind but I posted a copy on ireport to get the word out to more people.
Thank you so much from all of those that are concerned about our future.

Comment

heathroi:

You mean
as a nonimmigrant described in a sub-
paragraph (excluding subparagraphs (K), (T), (U),
and (V)) of section 101(a)(15) of the Immigration
and Nationality Act)—

...where three of the four references DO NOT EVEN EXIST?

http://www.uscis.gov/propub/template.htm?view=document&doc_action=sethitdoc&doc_hit=1&doc_searchcontext=jump&s_context=jump&s_action=newSearch&s_method=applyFilter&s_fieldSearch=nxthomecollectionid|SLB&s_fieldSearch=foliodestination|ACT101&s_type=all&hash=0-0-0-164

How many of you will continue to trust the politicians of this country to look after your rights?

Comment

Michael C: Your blog came to my attention in one of those mass emails with every one forwarding it to everyone they know, typically something I avoid, but not this one! Thank you, thank you and thank you!

After relearning the Constitution in light of recent dangerous events occurring in two of our branches of government, I concluded all of these eventualities.

I would add one thought regarding the 1st Amendment regarding our right to assembly, or in the abstract, our right to not be forced to assembly, such as will be the case when we are either limited in our choices for healthcare or have no choice at all.

For Michael H and other like-minded: I would ask you this: Are you law abiding citizens? And if so, why would you ever want to break the Supreme Law of the Nation?

This (healthcare reform) is a matter of States Rights and as such an issue the individual States who may or may not have similar restrictions in their State Constitutions yet whom are not restricted in their undertaking. Don't like one states law on healthcare, move to one more appealing to you.

Comment

This is just more misinformation. Almost NONE of what you claim is in the bill, and what little pieces of it are, you have grossly misinterpreted. And by not citing sections or quoting the exact language, you've made it difficult to rebut specifically. This is pathetic.

Comment

If you don't have health insurance and you only use cash-only practitioners the government has no medical information about you. This however is effectively criminalized and penalized by the bill.

Comment

@#48 "Coming from a country with universal health, which I rate highly, I have never heard of anyone being forced to have an abortion. Nor have I heard about this in any other first world nation with universal health."

You quoted what MC said ("and probably forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession."), but you clearly did not read it carefully. "BY MEMBERS OF THE MEDICAL PROFESSION" means that hospitals and medical clinics might be forced to perform abortions, or risk being shut down, under this plan, regardless of their personal moral code.

What is boils down to, and so many Americans seem to forget, is what the government subsidises, the government controls. If you want government out of your personal health care and retain your privacy, stop expecting a handout for medical benefits.

One point that is also often missed is that many countries that have NHC still require their participants to have private health insurance, like Australia, where citizens and residents are fined if they don't carry their own private coverage. So not only do you get inferior care with NHC, but then you STILL have to have private coverage, and it's far more dear in price because there isn't enough variety in what they have to cover to smooth out the medical costs to the insurance company, i.e., they are only used for the big ticket proceedures.

Comment

Dear Michael,

Thanks so much for your excellent work and presentation. For me the premise that the government should be (or has the constitutional power to be) in the health care business at all is repulsive. The issue for me is not whether the proposed legislation is good or bad. The real issue is that the Federal government is realistically bankrupt and is borrowing one half of every dollar it spends so more expense of any kind is suicidal to the nation in the long run. Anything the government touches makes it more expensive, more difficult and any encounters with true justice are purely coincidental. I have reached an age and disposition that any additional government encroachment is unacceptable. No other power is remotely close to threatening my personal (lawful) pursuit of happiness as is our own government. One more point: If the legislators did not even read the bill who wrote it?

Comment

Michael C: Could you provide an overview of how the judical branch functions as a check & balancing 3rd branch of our government? How and when do they get involved in the balance of power?

Comment

I would like to hear your thought on the ultimate abolishment of private insurance policies, and the "Contracts Clause" of the Constitution.
Thanks.

Jay Harris

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I'm soooooo impressed. Thank you for sharing your expertise during this freedom crises.

Comment

Question for everyone, where do you think concern for your health ranks among the Administration, Congress, Federal Courts, or the thousands of federal bureaucrats?

The federal republic was destroyed in 1865 (and yes slavery was too, the ONLY good that came out of the war), and since then the federal government has ignored, twisted, and trampled the Constitution, this bill like so many others is clearly unconstitutional on its face. I agree with Bob #44, “secession is the solution.”
Bob V.

Comment

Seems like we are watching everything that our revolutionist stood and died for being recreated though lies and deciete to protect greed .Greed is not what democracy was met to accomplish ,in fact it was just the opposite .The revolution ,as I was taught ,was to bring an end to taxation without representation ,which of course reached out in to all the other areas that were in control of the KING and his REPRESENTATIVES.So now we have gone full circle and are giving up our rights, ( gaurenteed by OUR Constitution ,not the Kings constitution,being re-written by a new KING.By the way didn't we go to the President idea after we left England .All I can offer was said the best by Jessie Ventura "Don't start the Revolution with out me" Scares me to say that as I am not to sure that the King and his Representatives won't be at my door calling me a Racist .Your break down was just what I needed to understand how big what is happening really is as I am not the smartest in the world but I am a Patriot and a Wounded Combat Vet that just can't believe what we are letting happen to us Thanks

Comment

Michael,
Kudos on your persistence in reading the whole thing and decoding it. Please ignore those few demagogues who have provided negative comments without any basis in fact. The best thing about this entire issue is that it will never pass. If it does, the federal government does not have the structure to enforce it. There are too many patriots who oppose this kind of control. Besides, God is the One who is in total control and I believe He will not pass this judgment on us - not for long anyway! The Age of Tabernacles is already underway, which will see the manifestation of the sons of God and His Millennial Kingdom on earth. No rapture, no heaven, everybody will eventually be saved. Praise Him now or later...

Comment

Michael,
A HUGE percentage of what you say is FLAT WRONG. Everyone should check out http://factcheck.org/2009/08/twenty-six-lies-about-hr-3200/ for an unbiased analysis of the bill.

The current health care system is unsustainable, an HMO administrator friend of mine calls it the "Health care death spiral". Right now those of us with insurance (which thankfully includes me) are sustaining a huge percentage of everyone's health care costs. That includes the uninsured. As health care becomes more expensive fewer and fewer people can afford it. That raises the premium costs on the remaining insured, resulting in more people dropping out because of the costs, leading to an eventual collapse of the system.

You have to give Obama credit for trying to address this issue. "Just say no" is not an answer, be a part of the solution.

Comment

@Faith

"You quoted what MC said ("and probably forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession."), but you clearly did not read it carefully. "BY MEMBERS OF THE MEDICAL PROFESSION" means that hospitals and medical clinics might be forced to perform abortions"

Actually, the sentence can be read two ways. It's ambiguous and could probably have been better phrased. But point taken. But hospitals being asked to perform accepted practice, whatever that may involve, is hardly surprising. Not that this example would be standard practice - there are dedicated clinics.

@Kevin,
"God is the One who is in total control..."

Is it really too much to ask to have an adult debate without bible bashing all over it.

There seems to be many who think this article answers questions, but I fail to see any proposals for solutions from these kinds of articles nor its readers. Anyone can pick flaws without suggesting alternatives.

The insurance companies model is badly broken. There are valid reasons every other first world nation has moved over to universal health.

Rescission - the act of canceling a health policy when people get sick, and paying bonuses to employees to reject the most. Many of you right now are paying a large chunk of your salary into a policy which is void, but they'll only take issue when you come to depend on it.

A Clinical Research Study found that 62.1% of all bankruptcies in '07 were medical. 75% had insurance! That is downright scary. It seems those who actively trash health reform haven't been bitten by the current system, yet.

The list goes on. But why anyone would want insurance companies standing between them and health care is beyond me. You have gotchas in small print, whether it excludes certain health issues, policies which exclude similar/repeat health issues, increased costs based on your history/claims, a profit incentive to reject claims, insisting ill people pay thousands towards scans/treatment - what's the point in paying thousands into a policy if it doesn't cover you fully when you need it!

I wouldn't mind so much with articles against health reform but there's so much misinformation over this issue that the integrity of those against health reform has been in question so far. For example factcheck.org analyzed emails circulated by Repubs and found that of 48 claims, 26 are blatant lies, 18 deliberately misleading, just 4 accurate.
http://tr.im/xuTl

Then there's others who sensationalize it to new extremes by comparing Obama with Nazi Germany when really they're polar opposites. Comparing someone who is trying to improve health with a sadistic movement is disgraceful frankly.

Even Fox News has joined in. Rather than just reporting balanced news they've imposed heavily one-sided political views. It seems many have forgot how untrustworthy the organization is. Here's previous employees of Fox News blowing the whistle on corruption:
http://bit.ly/CmzQH

Anyway, just to clarify my standpoint on insurance companies. Consider that the US has by far the highest GDP spent on health, double that of many others rated higher by the World Health Org. When they last compiled the stats they put the US at 37th, behind the UK at 18th (who have been aggressively misrepresented with edge cases). Also of note is that all of the top 10 on the list (at least), consisting of European countries, Singapore and Japan have universal health, and notably better stats on average lifespan and deaths under five. So with these kind of results, why is the US not #1 given the GDP? Perhaps because insurance companies are skimming so much off polcies? I read 30% somewhere. The 300m profits being made by top insurance companies is coming from somewhere, and that's not going to the health professionals.

"Death panel" is being banded about. But that's exactly what insurance companies are. People talk about universal health like they're signing their life away. You aren't forced to do anything. For example in the UK, if you prefer to wait less for an op, just do it via BUPA for example. You're not forced to use the NHS for everything. But that's not to say the NHS is bad - a close friend had cancer and he has made a full recovery already, so I've seen first hand how efficient the NHS is. You'll see failings and edge cases in every health system in the world, and the US has more than its fair share too (Michael Moore made a film about it if I recall). So reaching points of view based on edge cases achieves nothing, other than scaremonger.

Comment

@Anthony:

At no point did you address the constitutional issue upon which the original blog post was based. All you have done is bat around the other arguments and counter-arguments, but you never even begin to delve into what constitutional authority the federal government has to institute such reform. If this "reform" is going to pass it will require an amendment to the Constitution to make it constitutional.

Those who take the approach that the Constitution has been ignored since 1865, 1913, 1937, whenever, which creates a precedence are plain wrong. Were that the case, the law failing to prosecute one person who commits an unlawful homicide would justify all people committing the same act. The law is the law, and it begins with the Constitution.

It is high time we quit nursing at the teat of mother government awaiting another handout, man up, and tend to our own houses.

Reform is needed, but it should be done to increase liberty, not infringe upon it. Tort reform and purchasing of policies across state lines would be a place to start, but leave insurance to the individual. Create more competition, not less. A government option (incorrectly called a "public option") will create an entity which cannot be sued, controlled or competed with. It will price the competition out of business and force all onto its rolls.

People, this is not about whether people have access to health care. They do. This is about each and every person's right to make choices about his own care and well-being. This is about liberty. When there is doubt about an issue, liberty should prevail.

Comment

Dear Michael,
Thank you for your dedication to the study and understanding of Constitutional law. The Bible tells us in the book of Hosea, "My people are destroyed for their lack of knowledge." I believe this blatant insurgence of chaos and corruption has stimulated our thinking and motivation to action in a way not many events have. I again applaud you for this informative evaluation. There is GOOD NEWS! In Revelation 11:15
"The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign for all ages." Evil will not prevail! Christ will rule in Love and Righteousness and all these events point to the fact that this will occur soon. Not the end, but all things will be made new.
We are seeing the chaos when man rules apart from dependence on God. When morality and respect for God are absent and rejected there is an inability to process rational stability of thought. Man does what is right in his own eyes.
The hope for man is not in man, but in Jesus, the resurrected Son of God. He is and He will prevail!

Again my thanks to you.
John

Comment

I'm an attorney who wonders where all the attorneys are in the systematic removal of our civil rights in this and other legislation like the USA Patriot Act and the stimulus package (which sets up a billion-dollar system for centralized control of our health information).

I largely agree with Liberty and Anthony Hocken. Unlike most who have written in comment, however, I'm very concerned about the poor and working class of this country who, with their innocent children, are being driven to destitution by the actions of an elite corporatist state that diverts our attention from the really important issues through partisan bickering. Don't you all understand that if you are not in the top .5% or so in this country you are being screwed by those who are?

The ranks or the poor are increasing as formerly middle class people whose jobs have been eliminated are falling into poverty, loss of home and loss of health insurance. I, for one, have no health insurance, because I am underemployed and can't afford it, and I'm terrified what will happen if I get cancer. One of the reasons I'm in the state I'm in is that I was in Washington (during Bush I, Clinton and Bush II and can't tell you which was worst) and I tried to work for reform of the housing system, at high levels. I know about the corruption. My career was destroyed over doing what was right. There are few to support one when one takes a stand against The Powers that Be and tells the truth. I tried to get a job at the SEC, among other government agencies, and I could never get an interview. I was a mortgage backed securities specialist, friends. I was saying the currency was at risk and Fannie and Freddie were corrupt and risking taxpayer money and that HUD was a cesspool of corruption and encouraging loans to those who couldn't afford them, resulting in housing prices being too high. That was TEN YEARS AGO. I was drummed out of Washington. Now everyone says "who could have known?" that the crash would happen.

I believe everyone has a right to health care, as everyone who is accused of a crime has a right to representation by an attorney. Good health should not be something that only relatively wealthy people can have. Many, many, many hardworking Americans are a paycheck or an illness away from loss of everything. Aside from this being a moral and social justice issue, IMHO, it's not good for the rest of the country for more and more people to be uninsured and lose their homes. After all, who will pay the taxes or buy the products from the companies who are outsourcing the jobs?

As for health care, I also know a good deal about that. I did pharmaceutical regulation. HIPAA is largely useless because you can't get insurance without waiving your privacy rights. Now I understand insurance companies are using credit scores to price health insurance. For shame. I do pro bono work for people losing their homes through foreclosure. I now have a client in foreclosure because of Hodgkins Lymphoma. A hardworking middle class family with two cars and a nice house, which they put $55,000 down on, and three kids in a suburban community. The company the husband (who was ill) worked for had $6,000 deductible insurance and the insurance company denied many of the charges. The son was in a sports accident. The wife was laid off. They ended up having to use their mortgage money to pay for hospital bills, or the hospital would have kicked him out. Something like half the bankruptcies in this country are because of or compounded by unconscionable medical bills, and 80% of those involve people who are INSURED. Many people think their health insurance is great because they have never been catastrophically sick and seen what happens. Also, many people are stuck in government or large corporation jobs because it's almost impossible for many to get affordable health insurance on a one-off or small business basis. So the health insurance crisis is stifling the creation of and survival of small businesses, where almost all of the new jobs are coming from. Kaufman Foundation recently reported that effectively 100% of the growth in jobs in this country was due to small businesses. But we still continue to support corporatistas.

The danger with partisan people like Mr. Connelly presenting interpretations of pending bills is that they tend to say bills will end up with certain things happening as if that's what the law says, whereas they are really just figuring out a worst-case scenario involving things that are unstated in the legislation. In this case, so-called "conservatives" are saying the pending bills will cover illegal aliens largely because Democrats refused to put in a provision that would have involved sanctions if illegal aliens were covered. The bill actually says that illegal aliens are not covered -- it just doesn't have an enforcement mechanism. Similar situation vis a vis abortions. The bill does not say one way or another about abortions, or cancer for that matter, I think. This is scary enough without invoking scare tactics.

I believe in universal health care in theory, but I also think our culture is so greedy and our system is so corporatized and uncaring for the welfare of those who dissent or don't toe the line as The Powers That Be demand or that are just plain out of luck, that any overhaul could be worse than the pitiful status quo. That said, I know people who have lived in countries with universal health care and it can work and costs about half of what we are now paying as a society, so everyone could be covered for what we are paying now if it were done right under universal health care. This is one reason almost half the doctors in this country apparently support some form of "public plan." If Medicare were such a failure, they would not be taking that position. Medicare, for all its faults, actually works pretty well.

The question is whether we are up to social justice.

Comment

Michael, thank you for taking the time to thoughtfully examine and analyze this bill, and for citing Griswold. While it is a case well known to law students and attorneys, most of the general public is unaware of its significance and it is only through the efforts of people such as yourself that we can help our electorate become truly well informed. I look very much forward to having you on Constitutional Radio next Tuesday night with Drkate and me!

For those who would like to tune in, the link is:

www.blogtalkradio.com/Constitutional-Radio

Comment

Again, I can't help but beg you to rework your argument and cite actual portions of the bill so that we can see the details you claim are so clearly terrible.

And where do you stand on the Patriot Act?

Comment

Michael,

Your most important message is...."This is not about health care; it is about seizing power and limiting rights."

How did we get into this mess? We "trusted" or a better word, became "apathetic"...allowed others to do our thinking for us. This began right after we won our freedom, many, many years ago.

We began to be self-glorifed as time went on, instead of glorigying our Creator. We now have come to a point in history (just as many in previous generations - even Old Testament), where we have lost focus on the "True God."

We had all better start praying constantly! We are going into exile unless we return to obediencey to the Will of our Creator!

If we don't, history will repeat itself! Is our state of affairs any different the Isrealites exile by the Babylonians? The Jews exile by Hitler? The United States exile by a nation who are descendants of Ishmael?

Pray unceasingly for our Nation and God's children, that we will return our focus to the one true God. Through His mercy, He will guide and enlighten us once again to be the people He created us to be.

Thank you Michael for the gifts given to you by our Creator and being a good steward of those gifts.

God bless you in all ways,

Comment

Are you sure you read the right bill? I can't find any basis for your complaints in the text of H.R. 3200, nor in the drafts of the other bills (I haven't read the Gang of Six bill yet -- it was just out today).

For example, your privacy concerns would be obviated by the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), it seems to me. Nothing in any of these proposals touches HIPAA. I can't figure out where you found any language that affects privacy. Can you cite the section?

Comment

wow, Mr. TexASS lawyer dude, are you an ignorant asshole or what? I've worked in the health care 'industry' for 20 years, on the business side, and I can tell you without reservation that you must be totally oblivious to reality in America as most of us know it (of course yer frum TexASS so that explains a lot...I hears dey don't likes to much book larnin' down der?!) Seriously, mo-rans like you are the reason we are ranked 37th in health care in the world...fuck how I pray every day for deliverance from you goddam idiots and your stinkin' thinkin' (and I'm an atheist!) Take your load of bullshit and peddle it someplace else, and while your at it, in the words of your hero and fearful leader, Big Dick Cheney, GO FUCK YOURSELF!!!

Comment

Hi Joe,

I have to admit I am extremely conservative. But, I look for opposing points of few to broaden my understanding of a subject and to test my own set of facts, opinions, and beliefs on a subject. When someone presents an opposing view, it often will give me a chance to objectively review a subject from a different prospective then my own.

Unfortunately I have found nothing of any redeeming value in our comment. I will go so far as to request that you not be so blatantly disrespectful, it does nothing to further understanding or decision making on either side of this particular debate.

Sincerely,

Dean

Comment

I agree with Bryan. You claim to be a constitutional scholar but you are making assertions in your writing that seem to demonstrate a lack of understanding of even basic Constitutional Law. Your use of the 3rd Amendment is inappropriate. The right to keep soldiers out of your home has little to nothing to do with your argument. Further, you challenge the reader to locate the text in the Constitution that gives Congress the power to regulate healthcare. This is a disingenuous statement for a Constitutional Scholar to make. The reader would need to look to Supreme Court decisions and legislative notes. That is where you would find the connection between Congress' power of health care and the text of the constitution. Finally, you make the untruthful statement that there is "nothing in the law that allows you to contest or appeal the imposition of the tax [related to private healthcare]." 42 USC 1983 allows you to contest "deprivation of a legal right", including due process of law; giving you an opportunity to contest the tax.

Because of these dubious assertions, I am seriously questioning your credibility. It is extremely unfortunate that your writing is being circulated in mass e-mail.

Comment

Michael,

Thank you for your efforts however, I am a little confused about some of the comments you have made. Particularly when you say this bill provides for free health care for illegal immigrants. I have found, in two different sections of the bill, where it refers to individuals who are "lawfully present".

First in Section 242 - "(1) IN GENERAL- For purposes of this division, the term `affordable credit eligible individual' means, subject to subsection (b), an individual who is lawfully present in a State in the United States (other than as a nonimmigrant described in a subparagraph (excluding subparagraphs (K), (T), (U), and (V)) of section 101(a)(15) of the Immigration and Nationality Act)--"

Then in Section 246 - "Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States."

I may be wrong (it would not be the first time), but I believe this specifically excludes illegal immigrants from obtaining free health care coverage. Keep in mind, I am not bringing this to your attention in an attempt to debate or argue this bill, but only to seek the truth. Any additional information from you, or anyone, regarding this matter would be greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
Brian

Comment

I can't believe this thing is scaring everyone so much! I almost think the public believes that the Obama Administration is trying to harm them purposefully in this health care legislation.

Mr. Conelly- I very much doubt the Democrats or any government official are/is crafting this legislation with the purpose of grasping more power and denying rights to people. I have been to over 23 countries and have never seen lifestyles like ours here in the US. What people consider poverty here is laughable to most of the world.

People, even with this terrible recession we have more "stuff" in our homes than we can use. People have made dieting a gigantic business here where others can't find enough to eat.

Seriously, the American Dream is cool, but it needs lots of small players to maintain every big shot. I think this legislation is meant protect the small players. My only criticism of it from what I have read, is the length and complexity of it. The simpler, the better. We waste so much of our lives worrying about our downfall as a country. Great Britain lost it's dominance after WW2 and it is still there and so is it's government. If some other power were to become the world policeman I would welcome it. Ex-Governor Palin actually said to a heckler that some of her family were in Iraq defending his "right to dissent". I love our troops, but that is not why they are there. Get them home safe and that might pay for the whole thing or at least help wouldn't it?

Thanks to everyone who has maintained a respectful tone even while disagreeing!

Jim

Comment

Michael,

Thank you very much for your analysis of HB 3200. The Dems (and many Repubs) just don't grasp the concerns of mainstream America. We want Gov. to leave us ALONE and stay out of our business. If they were to stay within the framework of what our constitution outlines, there would be NO issues. Yet, they keep reaching, further and further until at some point, they reach too far and fall over. I think the falling has begun. We can right this thing, actually they can right this thing if they so choose but they won't. I fear for our country and its people. All the symptoms are there of a bad Cancer and our politicians that are supposed to be representing us are looking very much like a tumor. I mean look at the facts:
1.) Our traditional allys feel like we've abandoned them. (Poland and Czech just today; not to mention Israel)
2.) The most vile leaders in the word are calling Obama a hero (Chavez and Castro). Leaders that would love to see our downfall are are calling him "brave" and a "great leader" (Putin and Ahmadinejad)
3.) He appoints Racists and Communist to his cabinet and Czar positions
4.) He has vowed to run our coal industry out of business with cap and trade
The list is too long for a blog post but you know where this goes..
Lastly, every single social program that our government has ever run has failed, is failing or on the verge a failing. Every one of them are loaded with bureaucratic nightmares, excessive expenditures and no accountability for their employees. THIS is what is going to be running your and my health care?!?!? No thank you...well written Michael.

Comment

How can anyone not understand that this is not about providing healthcare for everyone? They say monopolies are the downfall of this system... but they want the biggest monopoly in charge of it. The best way to make something cost less is to promote competition. The government has stifled that with regulation. Stop stupid lawsuits and you will stop having lawyers tell doctors what needs to be done because they will get sued. How many tests are done because the doctor is afraid to get sued, not because he wants to make more money like the president insinuated?
Then they say they can pay for this by eliminating fraud. Shouldn't they have already done that? What makes them think they can now?
Don't enslave me by making me come to mother governement to ask for back what I've already earned through hard work and you have taken it away from me.

Thank you Michael for taking the time to read the pages that our elected officials don't feel they have to. ("Who has time to read the bill? - John Conyers)

Brett

Comment

great, just what we need, more idiots pretending to be experts, spreading more lies to their blind sheep followers, fanning the flames of hatred & violence. you people are getting hysterical about nothing. if you spent all that pent-up energy trying to make the world a better place rather than trying to tear down something positive (for a change), we might make some progress in this country. if you don't like the way things are going, please, all of you, move to Texas with this idiot and Ron Paul and live happily ever after.

Comment

NOTE: this comment was orginally posted with hyperlinks, which will not work in this blog.

I am a lawyer myself, and enjoy studying consitutional law; but I find Mr. Connelly's claims that HR3200 violates the Constitution dubious. So, I wanted to post a response. First of all, I think Mr. Connelly should have been more specific as to what parts of the HR3200 he is talking about. That would be much more constructive to the discussion.

1. Mr. Connelly claims that Congress does not have the authority to legislate health care reform. How so? It seems pretty easy to justify it on the basis of Congress' commerce power (Article I, Section 8, Clause 3) enumerated in the Constitution. The issue of Health Care reform easily affects
interstate commerce.

2. Mr. Connelly claims that HR3200 will allow the executive branch to have access to any individual's healthcare information, and this is a violation of the 4th amendment probibition against unreasonable search and seizure. Mr. Connelley does not say where in HR3200. Is he talking about data collections by the Health Choices Commissioner under section 142(c)?

In any case, It does not folllow that it a immediately and always a direct violation of the fourth amendment. What if the government had probable cause to support a legitimate warrant to inspect someone's health care information, which is something they can do today? The fourth amendment prohibits unreasonable search and seizure but it doesn't prohibit ANY search and seizure.

Of course, I will be concerned if this bill overrides other current laws concerning privacy of medical information, which has been affected by past legislation; one being the PATRIOT act passed in 2001. Read your privacy notice next time you go the hospital. In there is a provision that the hospital has to divulge information if the government suspects illegal activity or something like that. This, I believe, doesn't even need probable cause to support it.
see ACLU on Patriot Act

3. Mr Connelly claims that HR3200 infringes on the due process right to privacy as recognized in Griswold v. Connecticut, 381 U.S. 479 (1965) by way of the 3rd and 4th amendment. Maybe. Unfortunately, Mr. Connelley does not state where in HR3200 it infringes on the due process right to privacy.

Of course, it may already be the case that the Government can gain access to your private medical information thanks to laws like the PATRIOT act.

see Griswold v. Connecticut on wikipedia and Griswold opinion

Moreover, The description of the Griswold case is only partly true. The opinions in this case are all over the place, trying to determine where the right of privacy is based in the Constitution. There is no express provision declaring a right of privacy in the Constitution. The Douglas opinion with the most justices (three I think) expresed the opinion that the right of privacy that was infringed in this case was implied in the "penumbra" of the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 9th amendment. id at 381. Since the Griswold decision, the right of privacy has largely been grounded as a substantive
due process right in the liberty provision of the Due Process clause of the 14th amendment. ("nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process of law"). see Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992), see
Casey on wikipedia

The 3rd amendment has largely been ignored. Why? It talks about the prohibition of troops taking over your house. The Griswold decision just might be the broadest reading of that amendment. It is not clear how HR3200 would violate the prohibition against quartering your house to use for tropps.

4. I would argue that any Congressional legislation can't simply override the Constitution. Congress must propose an amendment to the Constitution by passing the amendment in both the House and the Senate by 2/3 vote each, and then 3/4 of the states must ratify the proposed amendment. See Article V of the Constitution.

If the law infringes on your rights or violates the Constitution, you must sue in court to enforce your rights and if the court (especially the Supreme Court) determines it to violate the Constitution, then the law may get struck down. Thus, it is not true that Congress can simply override the Consitution with ordinary legislation.

5. Mr. Connelley claims that the tax on private health care is an violation of the due process claim of the Fifth amendment.The main rule that the Supreme Court has found concerning Due Process, Adminstrative Agencies, and taxes is that if it is legislative in nature, that it is not a deprivation
of property without due process. Bi-Metallitic 239 US 441 (1915). Legislative means that if it applies to future conduct and it is generally applicable to everyone.
see Metallic on wikipedia.

Certainly, it seems that a tax on private health care insurance proscribes future conduct and applies ot everyone. Anyone, that is, who decides not to avoid the tax by conforming conduct. Due process means the legal process that is fair, like a court proceeding or an adminstrative hearing, that allows one to present their side and notice that there is a proceeding or hearing that threatens to take a due process right. It makes much more sense for legislative matters to be resolved in the legislature by voting and representation than every body in the population address their grievance with their representatives in court. The "due process" with legislation is voting for your representatives.

Thus, it far from clear why a tax here is deprivation without due process. To be fair though, the constitutional power to tax is controversial and source of a whole another topic.

see taxing power on wikipedia

6. It is certainly unfounded that the "left hates" the Bill of Rights. Libertarians exist on the left and everywhere in between. The point is precisely that the Bill of Rights has NOTHING To do with ideology. Libertarians of all political stripes stood in opposition to the PATRIOT Act in 2001.

7. Mr. Connelley claims that the 9th and the 10th amendment are effectively nullifed by this law if it passes. AGain, I reliterate that no ordinary legislation can overrule the Constitution. Congress has to pass an amendment by 2/3 of the vote in each house, and the 3/4 of the states must ratify the amendment. Again, if an individual beleives his or her rights is violated, by all means he or she should sue in court to enforce the right.

8. Mr. Connelley does not explain what the 9th amendment means or how HR3200 nullifies it. It states: "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." What does it mean? It does signify that the Bill of Rights,
which were enumerated, will not deny or disparage other rights. what are these other rights? There are theories but no hard and fast rule what it means. It might mean the Magna Carta. It might mean some of the rights recognized in common law Britain. Justice Goldberg concurring in the Griswold case thought it contained the right to privacy. So, if there is no definite consensus on what it means, how does HR3200 clearly "nullify it?"

see 9th Amendment on wikipedia

9. To be fair, the 10th amendment is more definite. As I understand it, it means that the states have certain powers reserved to them, noticeably the police power--the power to legislate health, welfare, safety, and morals. Health care reform, in general, can implicate a police power. However, health care reform is probably easily within Congress' power because it is within Congress' commerce power. Health care easily affects interstate commerce. Federal Legislation that becomes law is the supreme law of the land (Article VI, Section 2).
See Supreme Court cases where legislation has been upheld under Commerce clause. (Gonzales v. Raich, 545 U.S. 1, 2005, Congress can enact Controlled Substances Act to legislate even medical marijuana laws passed by some states, see Gonzales on Wikipedia); (Kazenbach v. McClung 379 U.S. 294 (1964), Congress can pass law prohibiting racial discrimination by private parties b/c they were near interstate highways, see Katzenbach on Wikipedia); (Perez v. United States, 402 U.S. 146 (1971), congress can legsilate purely intrastate loan rates under Rackecteering Statute, see Perez opinion).

Here are some cases where Congress legislation WAS struck down: (United States v. Morrison, 529 U.S. 598 (2000), Violence Against Women was not related to interstate commerce, see Morrison on Wikipedia; (United States v. Lopez 514 U.S. 549 (1995), Gun-Free School Zones Act of 1990 was not related to interstate Commerce, see Lopez on Wikipedia. Thus, if Congress has the commerce power to legislate health care reform, how does HR3200 if passed clearly "nullify" the 10th amendment? Or rather, What is the arguement that health care reform does not fall under the commerce clause?

see also 10th Amendment on Wikipdeia and Commerce Clause on Wikipedia

Therefore, I believe that Mr. Connelly makes an overly broad and false claim that HR3200 is a violation of the Constitution without much reference to the house bill or much consitutional support. I disagree with him for that reason. I encourage anyone with a interest in Constitutional law and how it relates to the health care reform debate to refer to all the links in this article.

Comment

“Mr. Connelly claims that Congress does not have the authority to legislate health care reform. How so? It seems pretty easy to justify it on the basis of Congress' commerce power (Article I, Section 8, Clause 3) enumerated in the Constitution. The issue of Health Care reform easily affects interstate commerce.”

You left out an important adverb, to wit, “among” the several states. Obama is on record as stating that he supports a single payer (not to be confused with payee) health care system that can only happen if all other payers are eliminated. This imitative clearly violates the section you reference. However, I am aware that this is a patent rebuke of progressives who insist that the Constitution is a document open to interpretation amid the concerns of the present. Are you a progressive?

“In any case, It does not folllow that it a immediately and always a direct violation of the fourth amendment. What if the government had probable cause to support a legitimate warrant to inspect someone's health care information, which is something they can do today? The fourth amendment prohibits unreasonable search and seizure but it doesn't prohibit ANY search and seizure.”

What if a frog had wings? You answer your own question: “…if the government had probable cause…” I believe Mr. Connelly is precisely correct.

“Unfortunately, Mr. Connelley does not state where in HR3200 it infringes on the due process right to privacy.”

I think you must look at this within the context of all the demonstrated contradictory statements of this administration, such as the lies about supporting a single payer system couple with the inability of our government to manage almost any federal program. Any toad once kissed is still a toad. Clever are those who can convince you they have become a prince.

“There is no express provision declaring a right of privacy in the Constitution.”

There is an express provision declaring that if it isn’t here, it isn’t constitutional.

“The 3rd amendment has largely been ignored. Why? It talks about the prohibition of troops taking over your house. The Griswold decision just might be the broadest reading of that amendment. It is not clear how HR3200 would violate the prohibition against quartering your house to use for tropps.”

I think you are being obtuse here.

“Thus, it is not true that Congress can simply override the Consitution with ordinary legislation.”

Suppose Congress chooses to use progressive’s interpretation of the Constitution, IMO such as your own?

“Certainly, it seems that a tax on private health care insurance proscribes future conduct and applies ot everyone.”

You can not assert or ignore the legality of one aspect of the Constitution to the detriment of any other aspect. This is the say that if you violate my 1st amendment rights, successfully arguing the 3rd amendment makes the action still illegal.

“The point is precisely that the Bill of Rights has NOTHING To do with ideology.”

The Constitution and Bill of Rights have everything to do with ideology in the practices of our government. Shame on you.

“Mr. Connelley claims that the 9th and the 10th amendment are effectively nullifed by this law if it passes. AGain, I reliterate that no ordinary legislation can overrule the Constitution.”

I guess that depends on whether or not such opinion is based upon either traditionalist or progressive interpretation. Personally, I find traditionalist interpretation to be the longest lasting.

“"The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." What does it mean? It does signify that the Bill of Rights,
which were enumerated, will not deny or disparage other rights. what are these other rights?”

I think the focus is heavily weighted upon the idea that if it isn’t enumerated, then it is a matter of the States and the people, not the federal government.

“So, if there is no definite consensus on what it means, how does HR3200 clearly "nullify it?"

Again, I think you are taking a progressives’ approach to interpretation. I believe the consensus is in the abstract that if it isn’t supported by the Constitution and/or the Bill of Rights, then the matter rests solely with the States and the people.

Why is it so hard for you and those likeminded to grasp that the founder’s predicated problem solving on the lowest level possible? Turn to your States for answers to problems such as healthcare; big brother will only screw it up!

“However, health care reform is probably easily within Congress' power because it is within Congress' commerce power.”

If the intent of this healthcare initiative was to enhance commerce “between” the states, I would agree. However, every indication of this healthcare initiative is to severely restrict or eliminate this specific commerce between all states.

“I encourage anyone with a interest in Constitutional law and how it relates to the health care reform debate to refer to all the links in this article.”

I still think that you are being obtuse. While I have little doubt that your links support what I believe to be a “progressive” approach to “fundamentally changing America”, I am rooted the security of traditionalist interpretation of the Constitution and the stability it provides us, the people, therefore have a very different interpretation.

“Again, if an individual beleives his or her rights is violated, by all means he or she should sue in court to enforce the right.”

I think that is precisely what is going to happen.

“Federal Legislation that becomes law is the supreme law of the land (Article VI, Section 2).”

Subordinate to the Constitution. That disparity in the laws of the country exists usurps not the constitutionality of their existence.

This issue along with many others have awakened many, myself included. I believe that the will of the people will prevail. That the proof will be in the pudding, not within the ingredients.

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@Jack

I am hoping your response was some form of parody. Just so you don't write this off as some form of progressive rant, I am a libertarian and my notions of government involvement are very conservative. I am highly skeptical that Obama will be able to come up with any workable form of a single payer system. That being said, I am also a law student studying the Constitution and the Supreme Court quite closely and I take issue with most of your response. Unfortunately, I don't have time to address your entire response so I will focus on the beginning:

"You left out an important adverb, to wit, “among” the several states. Obama is on record as stating that he supports a single payer (not to be confused with payee) health care system that can only happen if all other payers are eliminated. This imitative clearly violates the section you reference. However, I am aware that this is a patent rebuke of progressives who insist that the Constitution is a document open to interpretation amid the concerns of the present. Are you a progressive?"

The Commerce Clause clearly still governs here. From a strict constructionist standpoint, a single payer system would affect commerce in every state. For example, anytime a reimbursement check is sent from, say, DC to a hospital in Kansas, that is interstate commerce.

From a liberal interpretation standpoint, the single-payer health care system relates to the health care of all citizens in every state. Unhealthy citizens means may negatively impact commercial activities, thus affecting national commerce. (The courts have used reasoning similar to this to uphold government involvement in education.)

You make clear your political leanings and even more clear your ignorance of Constitutional Law. Again, if your response was simply parody, then well done. Otherwise, I encourage you to study up on the Constitution and the evolution of its interpretation over time.

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My comment is: we do need a Healthcare that is national. Borders of states/ or the out lying islands should also be included. Those who are against the constitution/ or want it changed is for their own profit. America is based on freedom, and iregardless of the subject if it enchroaches upon Freedom Of this nation- it is to be rejected with all one's might!

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In the original Bill, please cite the language which refers to the rationing, especially to seniors, that you speak of. I'm arguing with several liberal friends of mine about that point.

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“I am hoping your response was some form of parody. Just so you don't write this off as some form of progressive rant, I am a libertarian and my notions of government involvement are very conservative.”

I think, Eric, that your smarmy reply wasn’t a hope for parody but rather a projection of your own efforts. Tell me, are you a progressive?

“The Commerce Clause clearly still governs here. From a strict constructionist standpoint, a single payer system would affect commerce in every state. For example, anytime a reimbursement check is sent from, say, DC to a hospital in Kansas, that is interstate commerce.”

Again, I point out that the commerce clause stipulates “among” the several states and again I point out that “checks” between the federal government in DC (or anyplace else) and Kansas is not interstate commerce. In your studies, are they teaching you that the federal government is a "state"?

“From a liberal interpretation standpoint, the single-payer health care system relates to the health care of all citizens in every state.”

I think your liberal interpretation is actually a progressives’ argument. Single payer does not refer to the citizen of any state, they are payees. Single payer refers to having only one source for health care, in this case from the federal government.

“Unhealthy citizens means may negatively impact commercial activities, thus affecting national commerce. (The courts have used reasoning similar to this to uphold government involvement in education.)”

So too can unwise citizens negatively impact commercial activities on Wall St. Is that next? How about citizens negatively impacting commercial activities due to their job choice?

“You make clear your political leanings and even more clear your ignorance of Constitutional Law.”

As do you in your smarmy reply. As for ignorance…again I think you greatly over-rate your soapbox.

“Again, if your response was simply parody, then well done. Otherwise, I encourage you to study up on the Constitution and the evolution of its interpretation over time. “

I am quite comfortable with my knowledge of the constitution. Perhaps yours may change when you are no longer a law student.
So, Eric, you quickly declare libertarian and conservative leanings. Tell me why you didn’t come right out and say you are a progressive? Why hide it? Are you ashamed of it?

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Thank you sir for taking time to read and
post your findings. Peggy

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I think of all the comments for and against, Jack's statement as follows pretty much gets to the bottom line: "If the intent of this healthcare initiative was to enhance commerce “between” the states, I would agree. However, every indication of this healthcare initiative is to severely restrict or eliminate this specific commerce between all states." From my point of view, every other "program" the government has gotten it's fingers into is pretty much messed up and we tax payers are the ones footing the bill.

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Where are the references, i.e. where in the bill does it say the following?

The Insurance Companies provide for rationing of healthcare, particularly, where senior citizens and other classes of citizens are involved, free healthcare for illegal immigrants, free abortion services (in emergency rooms) and probably (NOTE: Probably -- what Attorney would use that term) , forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession.

The Bill will also eventually force private insurance companies out of business and put Money into a government run system. All decisions about personal healthcare are being made by being made by Ins Co. and most of them are not healthcare professionals. Hospital admissions, payments to physicians and allocations of necessary medical devices will be strictly controlled as they are now by insurance companies.

This legislation also provides for access by the appointees of the Obama administration of all of your personal healthcare information, your personal financial information (the IRS already has that) and the information of your employer, physician and hospital.. (This is great because if you are on a vacation and get sick, your information is in a central file. Or, if you got to a different specialist, that information will be available.) All of this is a direct violation of the specific provisions of the 4th Amendment to the Constitution protecting against unreasonable searches and seizures. (Says who?)

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