The Conversation

GOP Congressman Sees Supreme Court Future For Obamacare Origination Clause Lawsuit

Forty Republican House members are counting on the success of a lawsuit filed by the Pacific Legal Foundation that challenges the Affordable Care Act on the grounds that it violates the Constitution’s Origination Clause. Article I, Section 7, clause 1 of the U.S. Constitution mandates that "All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives.

“We now have it in two different courts—two circuits. We have it in the DC Circuit and its been stacked by Mr. Obama. That court seems to be more political than constitutional, but in the fifth circuit the Hotze case is going to be moving forward this year,” Congressman Trent Franks (R-AZ), Chairman of the subcommittee on the Constitution, told Breitbart News last Wednesday.

 Although Franks feels more confident that the GOP can win their case in the Fifth Circuit in Texas as opposed to capturing victory in the DC Circuit, nevertheless, regardless of the outcome either court decision, both sides will appeal and the U.S. Supreme Court will likely make the final decision.  Twenty states, including Colorado—the third state in the group with a Democratic governor to do so, support the federal lawsuit in Texas.

“We can hear oral arguments in the fall in the fifth circuit. We heard oral arguments here about two weeks ago. I, in fact, attended those oral arguments. They were both at the DC Circuit. The judges seem to be chasing rabbits rather than the central issue and the purpose of the construct of the origination clause is profound,” Franks said.

After the Democrats lost their filibuster proof majority in the upper chamber when Republican Senator Scott Brown filled the late Ted Kennedy’s seat in January of 2010, Democratic Party leaders figured out a last minute strategy to ram through the party’s signature health care bill, that would sidestep a GOP filibuster.

Knowing that the Constitution barred it’s chamber from originating revenue raising bills, Democratic leaders gutted a six page House Bill (H.R. 3590) that provided tax credits for soldiers after the enacting clause and switched it out with 2000 pages of different tax increases from three different bills that related to the Democrat’s Senate’s health care legislation.

According, to the Congressional Budget Office the Affordable Care Act is projected to bring in an estimated $813 billion in revenue over 10 a year period. Senate Democrats, however, claimed to only have amended a House bill not created the revenue-raising bill itself.  The name of the bill was then changed by a simple majority vote.

“It’s the same basic principle that we had that little unpleasantness with England about related to taxation without fair oversight or any sort of ratification on the part of the people,” Franks explained. “The court is stuck with a very fundamental issue. If they leave this after the challenge that’s coming and they do not strike it down, then they strike down the origination clause of the Constitution.”

 


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