The individual mandate is the wrong debate
Trejbal is a Roanoke Times editorial writer based in the New River Valley.
Reason has departed the national health care reform debate. Two sides wage a vacuous shouting match over the constitutionality of the individual mandate to purchase health insurance. Everything else falls aside.
Partisans tout every law professor’s analysis or judge’s opinion with which they agree. They hold each up as the definitive, irrefutable proof that confirms they were right all along.
They keep score, too, as if the number of judges were more important than quality analysis and sound logic.
The tally stands at three judges in favor of the individual mandate to two opposed. At best, these early decisions are the minor leagues, almost irrelevant to who will win the eventual World Series in the Supreme Court. Only nine judges are really in play, and maybe only one will matter — Justice Anthony Kennedy.
Lost in the constitutional dispute is a much more interesting and important question: Whether the individual mandate is even a good idea.
It is not.