What I want to know is why is Roberts' opinion the one that matters most? Wasn't there two majority opinions upholding it for different reasons?
I also imagine that this could potentially limit the power of the commerce clause. Anyone have thoughts on that?
And something tells me that Roberts did this in hopes to stay out of partisan politics but still give the GOP a way to get rid of Obamacare through reconciliation in the Senate (if the right is able to win the senate). Wouldn't they need Romney to win the presidential election as well in order to not have Obama veto the Senates decision?
From what I understand, and please correct me if I'm wrong, the Supreme Court ruled the mandate could not be placed under the commerce clause because the penalty for not purchasing insurance is a tax. If citizens are required to buy insurance under the commerce clause to regulate the industry, it would mean Congress can mandate citizens to purchase anything to help regulate any other industry, which would be unconsitutional. The commerce clause allows Congress to regulate industries, but it's not supposed to be done by making American people purchase within the industries needing regulation. This is how I understand it. If it is deemed a tax, then it is constitutional.
And yes, Romney would need to win the presidential election. It will be interesting to see what he says about it, since it's basically the same plan passed in Massachusetts when he was governor.
I think I'm cool with the opinion, except I don't really understand what this means:
The Act, however, bars the IRS from using several of its normal enforcement tools, such as criminal prosecutions and levies. §5000A(g)(2). And some individuals who are subject to the mandate are nonetheless exempt from the penaltyfor example, those with income below a certain threshold and members of Indian tribes. §5000A(e). Nat'l Fed'n of Indep. Bus. v. Sebelius, No. 11393, at *8 (2012).
This just says the government can't put a lien on someone's property or put them in jail for not having insurance. They will just be required to pay the penalty.