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It's constitutional to tax somebody if they buy something. Is it constitutional to tax somebody if they don't buy something?

So, the individual mandate is unconstitutional. However, it's legal to tax somebody for not buying insurance?

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Yeah, confusing, isn't it? The Obamateur said this wouldn't be a tax ... I guess he lied about that.

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Not the first lie, but the one he will never say he lied about.
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Nor his last
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He didn't lie, it's just Washington Speak. Sort of like the Emperors New Clothes. Even though it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, if they say it's a my little pony, then so it is.
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Yeah - he lied. Isn't that what he does best?
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"He does it best" because practice makes perfect.
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Does he tell the truth about anything?
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It was always a tax. But much like the first President Bush and President Clinton if you call it something other than a tax, the stupid tax payers won't know its a tax.

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Which "taxes" from Poppy Bush and Clinton are you talking about?
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Forcing people to buy insurance is unconstitutional but making people pay tax if they don't buy insurance is a constitutional exercise of Congress' power to tax. This is evident in the current claim by the president that the mandate is not a tax.

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If this is constitutional, then Congress can tax you for not buying anything. Not buying a GM car? Tax. Not buying school books? Tax. Not buying life insurance? Tax. This way lies madness.
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@Shiny: Look back on what it took to get ObamaCare through. All the time, expense, and the political damage inflicted. And this is for something that many people wanted--if not necessarily in this way. If someone wants to force us to buy GM cars, or have life insurance, or eat broccoli (as Antonin Scalia opined), go for it. They have a long and rocky row to hoe with a successful outcome being a long shot. As for text books, I thought our taxes already pay for those.
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When someone chooses to not buy health insurance, then uses emergency rooms for their medical services, and refuse to pay for those services for whatever reason, they have, in essence, "bought" those services with other people's money in the form of higher insurance premiums. All that is being done here is going to the source for payment rather than penalizing people who are trying to be responsible for their own actions.

Why should I pay higher premiums because some 20 year old, who believes he is indestructible, chooses not to have medical insurance while choosing to engage in risky behaviors--or even gets the flu through no fault of his own? While I don't appreciate having to pick up the medical tab for him, I also don't have the stomach for turning him away at the hospital door while he bleeds to death, nor do I want someone in poor health due to lack of insurance walking around spreading contagions.

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Government is why you have to pay for an individual who won't pay in the first place. They made it a law that hospitals can't turn people away. Then of course they must create new laws to fix the ones they messed up in the first place. You see govt can break your legs, give you crutches then tell you how you need govt to take care of you.
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1. Congress created the EMTALA in 1986 as part of COBRA. It is an unfounded mandate on hospitals and currently costs them 20% of their budget. The costs have been going up . For a full discussion see here: http://fds.duke.edu/db/attachment/1366
2. If EMTALA is solving the problem, why change it? Why create a 500 billion dollar regressive tax on Americans? If it is NOT solving the problem, why create a solution that is so cumbersome?
3. If EMTALA is the problem, what is the problem? It's that people don't pay for services. Tax those who don't pay for their services. Problem solved.
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1. Too many people need a car to get around. So Government mandates all auto dealerships to give away free cars, and if they don't, they won't get highway funds.
2. People get the free cars, and states complain their costs for creating & maintaining highways now costs them 20% more, and auto dealers say autos get even costlier every year because of the free demand. Congress says tough. But the number of people who won't buy autos goes up every year, because they can get free ones.
3. Congress/Obama then creates a law that taxes everyone, except those who own an auto, so people can continue to get free autos. They prescribe what the auto must have, and don't care if people don't need what the auto has.

Is this an intelligent way to solve a problem??
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Cal, when a small number of people are a problem, you fix that small number of people. You don't throw everything out and start over.
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@Medic: The number of people that have illnesses that insurance won't cover is not small. Do we continue what we have been doing and let rich people live because they can pay out of pocket and poor people die because they can't?
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If obamacare is in fact a tax then it is still unconstitutional. Article 1 section 8 says all bills for raising revenue (including taxes) shall originate in the House of reps, but the version of the bill that passed originated in the senate.

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Oh yeah I forgot about that. But it don't matter because we are officially not a country governed by the constitution anymore. The only hope of changing this is to elect someone other than Obama and rid the house and senate of all incumbents.
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Was this brought up in the oral arguments before the SCOTUS? Was it addressed in the opinion?
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It wasn't in either opinion, but it I don't know about oral arguments. Like BigRed said, I don't know if it would have mattered to these judges.
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They care less about ordinary people. They are politicians in black robes. They should have term limits. When a president leaves, he should take his appointed loser lawyers with him. Now, the IRS will be breathing down your necks because of this new tax health law. 2% of your income.
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I don't agree with you on the Justices serving with the presidents appointing them and then leaving. If we allowed that, each president could stack the court with his appointees effectively eliminating one of the crucial checks and balances, the independent Judicial branch. I do believe the qualifications are too lenient and screening lacks intensity.
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Resounding 'no' but not until after the general elections. So let's vote for those who will be most likely to keep their oath to uphold the US constitution.

And yes, the way courts work, the precedent of this case could most certainly extend in the future to whatever product the government chooses. All they have to do is call it a 'tax.'

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This is why Roberts decision is so unexplainable. During oral arguments, his biggest concern was that the mandate required people to perform an economic activity. And now he rules against his own questioning. I just can't understand it.
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Yes, Roberts vote was very puzzling.
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He sucks.
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That idiot Roberts says it is.

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Those dang activist judges!
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No, threatened and paid off.
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