Elena Kagan on Health Care
In other words, by doing nothing, people who chose not to buy health insurance were allegedly causing economic hardship for other people, because those who bought insurance had to pay increased premiums to cover uninsured people who couldn't pay their medical bills.
Justice Kagan noted that if the court found the mandate unconstitutional, but left in place the provision allowing preexisting conditions and other provisions that depended on the mandate, the whole health insurance system would be unsustainable. She said: "Once you say that the insurance companies have to cover all the sick people and all of the old people, the rates climb. More and more young people and healthy people say, why should we participate, we can just get it later when we get sick. So they leave the market, and the whole system crashes and burns, becomes unsustainable. "
That was one of the few points she made with which I agreed.
Opinions: Roberts wrote majority opinion; Ginsburg, Sotomayor; Breyer, and Kagan concurred in part (noting that the Commerce Clause alone justifies ObamaCare's mandate); Scalia, Kennedy & Alito dissented (on grounds that the individual mandate was unconstitutional); Thomas separately dissented (on grounds that the Commerce Clause is interpreted too broadly).
Kagan was Obama's solicitor general before he nominated her last year to take the seat of Justice John Paul Stevens. She testified during her confirmation hearing in 2010 that she "attended at least one meeting where the existence of the litigation was briefly mentioned, but none where any substantive discussion of the litigation occurred." Kagan left the administration in August, about five months after the health care overhaul became law. She said she would not take part in cases in which she "participated in formulating the government's litigating position."
Conservatives point to Kagan's email exchange about an upcoming vote on the legislation in the House of Representatives. "I hear they have the votes, Larry!! Simply amazing," she said.
The case was the first clear test of federal authority to come before the high court in five years, and was argued just as Congress neared final passage of the broad healthcare law. In January, Solicitor General Elena Kagan, now President Obama's nominee to the court, appeared before it to defend a broad reading of congressional power in the Comstock case.
Plaintiffs were prescribed a brand name drug for which pharmacists substituted a generic drug, which the FDA had approved under the process federal law authorized for generics. Plaintiffs were diagnosed with a disorder linked to the extended use of the drug. They filed state tort law claims against the manufacturers of the generics, alleging failures to label their products with a warning of known risks. The generics carried the same warnings as the brand name and, the manufacturers argued, since federal regulations required the generics to have the same warnings as the brand name, compliance with a state law requiring different warnings was impossible.
|Other Justices on Health Care:||Elena Kagan on other issues:|
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Sandra Day O'Connor
John Paul Stevens
Natural Law Platform