via: Patriot Post
“The construction applied … to those parts of the Constitution of the United States which delegate Congress a power … ought not to be construed as themselves to give unlimited powers.” –Thomas Jefferson
House Republicans’ first goal for the 112th Congress is a vote on repeal of ObamaCare. Even if that passes the House, however, it faces almost sure defeat in the Senate. On top of that, we’re pretty sure the occupant in the White House would veto a repeal of his signature accomplishment. None of that means House Republicans shouldn’t proceed apace.
As we have said repeatedly from the start, ObamaCare is an unconstitutional federal power grab that will result in higher costs for worse care. Politically, the repeal effort sets up the 2012 campaign, but more important, if Republicans are to abide by their oaths, they must aim for repeal on principle, not just politics.
House Republicans may find allies in House Democrats who originally voted against ObamaCare. “I have not read the language yet, but I am inclined to support the repeal,” said Rep. Dan Boren (D-OK), who voted against it originally. Others have dug in. Former Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) warned, “[T]o say that we are going to repeal is … to do very serious violence to the national debt and deficit.”
Sorry, we should have warned you to swallow your coffee before reading that howler. During her four years at the helm, the Pelosi-led Congress was responsible for adding $5.3 trillion to the national debt — $4 trillion in just the last two years.
Pelosi and other ObamaCare apologists claim that ObamaCare itself will reduce the deficit and, therefore, repeal will do the opposite. They’re using Congressional Budget Office numbers to back this up, but that, in and of itself, is deceiving. The CBO can score legislation only as Congress feeds it to them, not always as reality dictates. In this case, the CBO is offsetting a spending increase of $400 billion, which is a sure thing, with cost savings that aren’t. What is worse, they are looking at 10 years of tax revenue versus six years of expenditures.
Regulations are another reason — make that thousands of reasons — to fight for repeal. For example, Section 1233 of a draft of ObamaCare mandated federal funding for end-of-life counseling. After critics said the section was bringing about “death panels,” however, the Senate ended up leaving it out of the final bill. Yet when Medicare released hundreds of new rules last month, funding for this counseling during annual wellness visits was quietly added. As Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), author of Section 1233, put it, “The longer this [regulation] goes unnoticed, the better our chances of keeping it.” Well, so much for that. Almost as soon as it became known, the administration reversed course.
Though the White House backtracked on this stealth regulation, there are surely more to come. On Jan. 1, several provisions of ObamaCare took effect, including restrictions on medical spending accounts and taxes on drug makers, so repeal efforts come not a moment too soon.
Reading the Constitution? How Quaint.
Leftists screamed like demons splashed with holy water after congressional Republicans read aloud the Constitution to begin the 112th Congress this week. Such a reaction is understandable given that the document puts great limits on the government power leftists so cherish. Their mockery was open and widespread. The New York Times editorialized that it was “presumptuous and self-righteous” as well as a “ghastly waste of time.”
Elsewhere, MSNBC’s Chris Hayes asked Slate.com senior editor and legal correspondent Dahlia Lithwick, “Is there an historical precedent for the Constitution fetish on the right?” Lithwick responded, “I think so. I think the way some people rub Buddha and they think the magic will come off, I think there’s a long-standing tradition in this country. We’re awfully religious about the Constitution. I think there is a sort of fetishization here that is of a piece with the sort of need for a religious document that’s immutable and perfect in every way.”
Similarly, Washington Post blogger Ezra Klein derided the reading as “a gimmick.” Said Klein, “I mean, you can say two things about it. One is that it has no binding power on anything. And two, the issue of the Constitution is not that people don’t read the text and think they’re following. The issue of the Constitution is that the text is confusing because it was written more than 100 years ago and what people believe it says differs from person to person and differs depending on what they want to get done.” Hmm, “more than 100 years ago,” Ezra?
Thomas Jefferson thought differently: “In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.”