Monday, October 25, 2010

Mixed record on ObamaCare lawsuits

As this Register editorial notes, several lawsuits challenging primarily the individual mandate to buy health insurance as a condition of living in the country are going forward -- notably in Virginia and Florida, while a federal judge in Michigan has ruled that the mandate is constitutional. However things develop at district court, of course, the decision will be appealed. Sooner of later the Supreme Court is almost certain to take up the case, probably by consolidating several cases into one case.

I hadn't noted, as Ilya Somin does, that a federal district court in California has dismissed a suit brought by Calif. legislator Steve Baldwin and the Pacific Justice Institute on the grounds that they lack standing to bring a suit because they haven't been harmed by any of the provisions -- yet. Noting that the mandate doesn't go into effect until 2014, the judge reasons that Baldwin might have acquired health insurance by then, of the Justice Institute may have resolved any problems it has revolving around ObamaCare mandates. Ilya, who thinks strict standing rules are seldom advisable, suspects that standing will be restored on appeal to the Ninth Circuit because liberal judges are generally more latitudinarian on standing than conservative justices. But consistency does sometimes give way to politically preferred outcome. In our judicial system? Nah! Never happen.

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