Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Legal challenges to the health care legislation

Libertarian law professor Randy Barnett offers some thoughts about possible legal challenges to the recently passed health care legislation.

I do not see much coming out of this. The court is not going to overturn Wickard v. Filburn, the New Deal era decision in which it ruled that growing food on your own land for your own use constitutes interstate commerce. Put differently, in substance it ruled that the interstate commerce clause gives the federal government unlimited power to regulate economic activity, subject only to the minor limits imposed by the Court's favorites among the Bill of Rights. Find that in the Federalist Papers! There have been some tiny retreats in recent years but I suspect the court is still smarting enough from Bush v. Gore that it would not touch anything as controversial as this.

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