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Is Socialist Medicine Constitutional?

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Posted on November 5 2009 10:27 pm

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) said on the “Glenn Beck Program” Wednesday that the proposed nationalization of America’s healthcare system is unconstitutional.

David B. Rivkin Jr. and Lee A. Casey, who worked in the Justice Department during the administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, agree. They argue that a series of Supreme Court decisions related to privacy, including Roe v. Wade, would seem to doom a socialist medicine system.

…the justices posited a constitutionally mandated zone of personal privacy that must remain free of government regulation, except in the most exceptional circumstances. As the court explained in Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992), “these matters, involving the most intimate and personal choices a person may make in a lifetime, choices central to personal dignity and autonomy, are central to the liberty protected by the Fourteenth Amendment. At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and the mystery of human life.”

It is, of course, difficult to imagine choices more “central to personal dignity and autonomy” than measures to be taken for the prevention and treatment of disease — measures that may be essential to preserve or extend life itself.

Bachmann is one of those rare lawmakers who actually cares about the strictures placed on the federal government by the Constitution. Plenty of lawmakers –both Democrats and Republicans– don’t give a farthing’s cuss what the Constitution actually allows them to do. They view it as a quaint antique document that is an occasionally inconvenient obstacle to the expansion of government power.

Bachmann previously grilled Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner about another constitutionally suspect program, the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) and various other bailouts:

Bachmann: Mr. Secretary, what provision in the Constitution could you point to, to give authority for the actions that have been taken the Treasury since March of ’08?

Geithner: Oh well, the Congress legislated in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act a range of very important new authorities.

Bachmann: Here in the Constitution — what in the Constitution could you point to, to give authority to the Treasury for the extraordinary actions that have been taken?

The day before today’s large rally outside the U.S. Capitol in opposition to ObamaCare, Bachmann urged Americans to attend the rally Thursday. Given the speed with which House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is pressing the socialist healthcare legislation, Bachmann called the rally an “emergency house call.”

Do something, because this is it. The clock is hitting 11:59 and this health care bill is the crown jewel of socialism. Socialized medicine is the crown jewel. But tomorrow is our Super Bowl of freedom.

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