11th Circuit Court Of Appeals Affirms Judge Vinson, Sort Of

Update 8/13/2011. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit ruled Friday that a provision of the law that requires people to buy health insurance or face an annual penalty is unconstitutional. The ruling affirmed an earlier decision by U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson of Pensacola, Florida.

Curiously though, the court also ruled that absent the mandate, the Act can continue. What this means is that three judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit pulled a severability clause out of their butt.

In Judge Vinson’s ruling, he concluded . . .

“Because the individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable, the entire Act must be declared void.” {emphasis added}

The survivability of Obamacare without forced participation is zero. Well with one caveat. For Obamacare to survive without forced participation, the administration would have to speed up the elimination of the private health insurance industry process to before the next election instead of after. I don’t see that happening. So for all practical purposes, the fact that the rest of the Act may stay is moot. The court knows this. They also know that the Act contained no severability clause. That the court found the rest of the Act is constitutional and ignored the non-severability of the Act looks like a political decision with no real consequences. Well, except for the fact that the judges made a political decision here, instead of a legal one. Isn’t that like, not their job?

Let’s hope this gets to the Supreme Court this year. Today’s ruling did nothing to reduce the FUD factor. In fact, it only made it worse. That’s not what an economy struggling to survive needs if it is going to recover.

Markets don’t do well in an atmosphere of fear, uncertainty, and doubt. The power grab the Obama administration has perpetrated over various industries and companies is sending only one message to business. Watch out, you could be next.

Link: LegalNewsline | Eleventh Circuit rules against part of ObamaCare.