Day 2 of the captivating historic hearings of the case before the U.S. Supreme Court on the constitutionality of the health care reform law is over, and the 2 hour audio can be heard here: http://soundcloud.com/huffington-post-politics/supreme-court-health-care?utm_source=soundcloud&utm_campaign=wtshare&utm_medium=email&utm_content=http://soundcloud.com/huffington-post-politics/supreme-court-health-care
It’s a case involving the scope of the Commerce Clause under the Constitution, perhaps the most momentous Commerce Clause case since the Court heard the series of cases in the 1930s involving the New Deal laws. The Commerce Clause gives Congress the power to regulate interstate commerce. The law’s defenders say the federal government has authority to compel Americans to buy health insurance under the of the Constitution, which gives the Federal Government the power to regulate interstate commerce.
The opponents of the law say a requirement that individuals contract with private insurance companies is not governed by the Commerce Clause, since it is not a regulation of interstate commerce, but rather an unlawful mandate to force people to buy a product (insurance) from a private company.
The health care reform law, officially called the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, may be in jeopardy, since an analysis of the questions made by swing vote Justice Kennedy expressed strong concerns about the individual mandate.
A decision on the case, Department of Health and Human Services v. Florida(11-398), is expected by late June. The media is already proclaiming the law to be “on the brink” and “imperiled.”