House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) today responded to another federal court ruling finding that the health care mandate--a key provision of Democrats' health care law--is unconstitutional. District Court Judge Roger Vinson found that the individual mandate is an overreach of Congress' constitutional authority under the Commerce Clause. As a result, Judge Vinson struck down the entire health care law.
"The foundation of the Democrats' health care law is crumbling. Another federal district court has found that the individual mandate, which requires Americans to purchase health insurance, is an unconstitutional overreach of congressional authority.
"The individual mandate is undemocratic, unprecedented and unconstitutional. Never before has the federal government required people to buy any good or service, until now. The mandate is undemocratic because it limits people's freedom to make their own decisions about health care.
"If we allow this abuse of authority to stand, where will it end? If Congress can require the American people to purchase health insurance, why not a car or any other product or service that Congress deems necessary?
"Congress should pass constitutional reforms that reduce health care costs while maintaining quality care. And we should oppose any law that violates the Constitution and common sense."
Chairman Smith has previously announced that he plans to hold a hearing in February to further examine constitutional problems with the health care law and the individual mandate.