Chief Justice John Roberts’s original 2012 defense of Obamacare was based on his understanding of the individual mandate as a “tax.”
Roberts’s defense of Obamacare derails arguments from numerous Democratic lawmakers, progressive activists and journalists that the inclusion of an individual mandate repeal in a tax reform bill disingenuously conflates two distinct policy areas.
Roberts defended the Obamacare individual mandate on the basis that it falls under the broad congressional power to raise taxes “for the general welfare.”
“The Federal Government does have the power to impose a tax on those without health insurance. Section 5000A is therefore constitutional, because it can reasonably be read as a tax,” Roberts wrote for the court in defense of its 5-4 decision in favor of Obamacare.
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