So, is the Supreme Court legitimate again? Evidently so, as those who fretted about the Court sliding into the abyss are happy with this particular 5-4 decision. But, as Glenn Reynolds reminds us, the real issue of legitimacy posed by Obamacare relates to the executive and legislative branches:
With the focus on the Supreme Court’s opinion, it’s easy to forget the sleazy way that Obamacare was passed. But the Supreme Court itself points out one key aspect. Though President Obama pooh-poohed the idea that the mandate was a tax, the Supreme Court found that, in fact, it was. …
Obama had to reject [the] notion [that the mandate was a tax], since otherwise Obamacare’s tax increase would have represented a massive middle-class tax increase indeed, and one that violated his promise that families earning less than $250,000 a year would see no tax increases of any kind under his plan. Now the Supreme Court has basically said he lied.
Of course, that’s not the only broken promise from Obamacare’s passage. Obama also promised that if you liked your existing health insurance policy, you’d get to keep it — something that quickly turned out to be false, as the changes mandated under the health care law led to severe cuts in coverage, or even cancellation of coverage, by insurers.
And if the executive branch’s treatment of Obamacare was characterized by lies, the legislative branch didn’t look any better. Obamacare, remember, was rammed through in the teeth of popular opposition; when the special election victory of Scott Brown meant that Democrats no longer had a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, the bill was squeezed through via a “reconciliation” procedure under the fiction that it was a budget bill, not substantive legislation. …
So, at the end of the day, the legitimacy question rests not with the Supreme Court, but with Congress and the president.
So far, the returns are not good. A Rasmussen poll last week showed only 22 percent of Americans think our present government enjoys the “consent of the governed” — the Framers’ standard for legitimacy.
Maybe the Dems can convince that Congress is legitimate by joining in a bipartisan effort to repeal Obamacare.