In a ruling that seemed to catch both the right and the left off guard last week, the Supreme Court decided that “Obamacare” or more appropriately the “Affordable Care Act” is constitutional and will be allowed to remain in force. The reason? Because the mandate that every American who can afford insurance must have it is a type of tax, rather than a demand on commerce. The ruling was so strangely worded, that many networks jumped the gun and first reported that the act was struck down by the court, rather than supported.
The ruling brought the right wing out in full force, condemning both the Court and Obama for this new “tax” and for twisting the law.
The ruling was surprising because conservative Chief Justice Roberts was the only justice to switch party lines and side with the liberal judges. During arguments a few weeks ago, the Affordable Care Act looked like it didn’t stand much of a chance.
Now conservatives are rallying against Justice Roberts calling him a coward for “siding” with liberals and singlehandedly bringing down the great American Way.
But what Justice Roberts did was anything but cowardly. In a day and age where politics has largely become about grandstanding, taking sides and refusing to give an inch to your so-called “enemies,” Roberts decided to look at this issue from a purely legal standpoint and reach his conclusion based on his legal education, background and his understanding of the constitution.
Justice Roberts was brave. He made the decision he wanted to in the face of immense political pressure.
The purpose of the Supreme Court, according to the constitution written by our forefathers, is to interpret the constitution and uphold the law of the land. In a system of checks and balances it is a necessary last step.
For those on the right, the court is quickly becoming enemy #1. I have often wondered how people who claim to love the constitution so much could so despise such an important element of its workings.