In 1942, one of Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal Supreme Courts ruled that an Ohio farmer named Filburn was NOT permitted to raise the amount of wheat he wished on his own farm, for the purpose of feeding his own family. And for 70 years this and a handful of similar, overreaching decisions by the Court have resulted in the wholesale abuse of a power granted Congress in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution, namely the “Commerce Clause.”
In the Wickard v Filburn case, the Court opened to Congress the nearly unlimited power to exercise legislative authority relating to virtually ANYTHING Congress may define as “commerce among the several states.” The Ohio farmer had been fined $117 because he grew winter wheat in excess of the quantity permitted by quota in the Agricultural Adjustment Act.
And even though it was for use on his own farm, the Court decided that Filburn had violated the law, ruling that through the Act, Congress had the power to create quotas which “…not only embrace all that may be sold without penalty but also what may be consumed on the premises.” (my italics) The Court considered such sweeping authority to regulate a “…‘necessary and proper’ implementation of the power of Congress over interstate commerce.”
Over the years, Congress has claimed almost unlimited authority to create and defend legislation under its Commerce Clause powers by manufacturing increasingly fanciful connections between congressional action and commerce among the several states.
In 1995 for example, the government claimed before the Supreme Court that authority supporting the federal law against possession of a gun within 1000’ of a school was derived from theCommerce Clause, arguing that school violence would impact negatively on insurance rates and limit travel to an area considered unsafe, both having an effect on commerce! On this occasion at least, the Court did not buy into the governments strained assertions.
Yet it is upon the powers wielded by Congress under the Commerce Clause that Barack Hussein Obama is depending for a favorable Supreme Court ruling on the Constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act–ObamaCare. The Department of Justice will argue that the federal government has the authority to force American citizens to purchase healthcare coverage mandated by ObamaCare and apply a penalty to those who do not because it has the power to regulate commerce. And the sale and purchase of insurance are commerce.
In response to the government’s assertions, the Liberty Legal Foundation has filed an Amicus (friend of the Court) brief with the Supreme Court pertaining to the ObamaCare-related, “Health and Human Services v Florida” case. But rather than claim the Commerce Clause does not provide the authority required to support Obama’s assault on the liberty of the American people, Liberty Legal argues that the Court should recognize and correct the error made by the 1942 Court and overturn the Wickard v Filburn decision.
For as Liberty Legal rightly points out, “Wickard was a direct cause of exponential growth in federal spending, decreased faith in Congress, shocking growth in federal regulations and loss of freedom in America..”
Oral arguments pertaining to ObamaCare will begin on March 26th and continue for a record 3 days. We already know how 4 members of the Court will decide, including Justice Kagan who reveals the left’s well-known class and respect for rules of proper behavior by her refusal to recuse herself from the case even though she literally helped pass the legislation!
It will be upon the honor of the remaining 5 members of the Court that the liberty of the American public will depend.
Please see the excellent work done on behalf of the American people by the Liberty Legal Foundation at:http://libertylegalfoundation.org/