Dems’ Diverse Defenses Of Obamacare

Craig Bannister
By Craig Bannister | June 26, 2012 | 9:22 AM EDT

Democrats’ defenses of the constitutionality of the Obamacare purchase mandate vary wildly, from invoking non-existent clauses to simply declaring that “nobody” questions their authority.

Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), for example, cited the nonexistent “good and welfare" clause of the Constitution as the source of Congress’ authority. Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) claimed “The Pursuit of Happiness” gives Congress the authority to require people to buy products.

Other legislators have given a variety of answers. Some could give no answer at all:

  • Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.): “Are you serious? Are you serious?”
  • Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.): “Nobody questions” (our authority).
  • Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.): “Well, I don’t know if there’s a specific constitutional provision.”
  • Sen. Daniel Akaka (D.-Hawaii): “I’m not aware of that--let me put it that way.”
  • Sen. Jack Reed (D.-R.I.): “Let me see. I would have to check the specific sections. So, I’ll have to get back to you”
  • Sen. Ben Nelson (D.-Neb.): “Well, you know, I don’t know that I’m a constitutional scholar. So, I, I’m not going to be able to answer that question.”
  • Sen. Jeff Merkley (D.-Ore.): “The very first enumerated power.”

Here's a video montage of their responses. Much like snowflakes, well, you know...

See more "Right Views, Right Now" opinion and analysis.

If the player does not load, please check that you are running the latest version of Adobe Flash Player.