- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 11, 2012


I agree that in general, the courts should defer to the legislative branch when passing laws, but my problem with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr.’s decision on Obamacare in particular is that it is not a law (“Roberts refused to legislate from the bench,” Letters, Friday).

How can a piece of legislation that is 2,700 pages long qualify as a law? By definition any legislation of that length cannot possibly pass the first test of a law as understood by our Founders when they created the Constitution in 1787, and as understood by the Constitution’s 14th Amendment when it was ratified in 1868. A law must treat all citizens equally. The 14th Amendment is very clear: No law can deny any U.S. citizen “equal protection.”

It does not take 2,700 pages to describe the equal treatment of all citizens. It takes 2,700 pages to describe the law’s myriad clauses, subsets, codicils, exceptions, addendums and regulations, plus the various bureaucracies that will determine and administer them. To give one example, Obamacare includes what are called “Ethics Panels,” which will determine, depending on a patient’s age, whether that patient can receive certain medical treatments, including surgery. That seems to me to be age discrimination and it is clearly unequal treatment.



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