Obamacare whacked by U.S. 11th Circuit

Forced purchase of health insurance ruled unconsitutional. Next stop: The Supremes.

ATLANTA, August 11, 2011—Reuters reports today that the United States 11th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled the forced insurance purchase provision of the Obamacare legislation signed into law last year is unconstitutional. The court ruled that Congress exceeded its authority when it required Americans either to purchase coverage or face a stiff financial penalty.

While throwing out the key provision of this legislation, the court also ruled that the remainder of Obamacare could remain in effect. However, the elimination of the “individual mandate” effectively guts the legislation, depriving it of its major source of funding. The other primary source: a radical cut in Medicare benefits.


11th Circuit Court of Appeals guts Obamacare. Will The Supremes agree?

With the willing collusion of the mainstream media, the law’s supporters have been largely successful thus far in concealing the true nature of these Medicare cuts from voters, misleadingly accusing Republicans like Paul Ryan of wreaking the economic havoc the Democrats themselves have already set in motion for 2014.

The 11th Circuit ruling raises the bar of proof on the Obama administration for persuading the court that the individual mandate is indeed constitutional. But the ruling will almost certainly be appealed by an Administration that has sought from day one to significantly expand the reach and authority of an already financially overextended Federal government.

While a positive development for the majority of Americans who oppose this legislation, the appeals court ruling will nevertheless add to and prolong the uncertainty faced by individuals and companies with regard to their future career and business development plans—a primary reason why the Great Recession has never quite recessed.

Businesses continue to be reluctant to hire new employees lest they incur significant economic damage from the Obamacare plan as a result. The continuing uncertainty set in motion by this legislation is a major underlying factor in this country’s continued lack of job growth after nearly four years of continuing economic distress.

Without the massive funding mechanism of the individual mandate, today’s court ruling puts the entire Obamacare package in jeopardy. Should the court’s ruling be upheld by the Supreme Court, the United States might once again begin to create jobs, lower taxes, balance the budget, and begin the long climb out of the current economic morass.

Disclaimer: The author of this column maintains several active trading and investment portfolios and owns residential and investment real estate in Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland.

Illustrations, charts, commentary, and analysis are only the author’s view of current or historical market activity and don’t constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any security or contract. Views, indications, and analysis aren’t necessarily predictive of any future market or government action. Rather they indicate the author’s opinion as to a range of possibilities that may occur going forward.

References to other reporters, analysts, pundits, or commentators are illustrative only and do not necessarily represent an endorsement of such individuals’ points of view. If specific investment vehicles are mentioned in any article under this column heading, the author will always fully disclose any active or contemplated investments in said vehicles.

Read more of Terry’s news and reviews at Curtain Up! in the Entertain Us neighborhood of the Washington Times Communities. For Terry’s investing insights, visit his WT Communities column, The Prudent Man in Politics.

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Terry Ponick

Now writing on investing, politics, music, movies and theater for the Washington Times Communities, Terry was formerly the longtime music and culture critic for the Washington Times print edition (1994-2009) before moving online with Communities in 2010.  



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