Obama warns ‘unelected’ Supreme Court against striking down health law

The almighty has spoken again.  Today, the Obamanut used his strongest language ever, on the Supreme Court review of the federal health care overhaul, cautioned the court Monday against overturning the law — while repeatedly saying he’s “confident” it will be upheld. 

Obama spoke at length about the case at a joint press conference with the leaders of Mexico and Canada. The president, adopting what he described as the language of conservatives who fret about judicial activism, questioned how an “unelected group of people” could overturn a law approved by Congress.  (he means the Supreme Court Justices).

“I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress,” Obama said.   Fox News

Last week the justices heard 3 days of arguments in four separate challenges to the health care law, which stands as the president’s signature domestic policy accomplishment.  A key part was over the individual mandate, the requirement that Americans buy health insurance. Critics say the mandate is unconstitutional, and that the federal government cannot force people into the insurance marketplace.

On Monday Obama said that without such a mandate, the law would not have a mechanism to ensure those with preexisting conditions get health care.

“I’m confident that this will be upheld because it should be upheld,” Obama said, describing the law as “constitutional.”

Republicans slammed his comments, one especially, Sen Orrin Hatch, who said:

“It must be nice living in a fantasy world where every law you like is constitutional and every Supreme Court decision you don’t is ‘activist,’” he said in a statement. “Many of us have been arguing for nearly three years that the federal government does not have the power to dictate individuals’ purchasing decisions. After a national debate on the subject, more than two-thirds of Americans agree that the Obamacare insurance mandate is unconstitutional.”  Fox News

Until the heath care case remarks, the press conference was focused mostly on economic issues, as well as the war on drugs. 

The leaders vowed a new effort to boost North American trade and cut needless regulation that stifles it. “Our three nations are going to sit down together, go through the books and simplify and eliminate more regulations that will make our joint economies stronger,” Obama said.  Fox News

But the Keystone Pipeline project wasn’t covered.  Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper was disappointed in Obama’s decision.  Canada has the world’s third-largest oil reserves — more than 170 billion barrels — after Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, and daily production of 1.5 million barrels from the oil sands is expected to rise to 3.7 million by 2025.

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