Freedom Flix

IJ on the Individual Mandate

 

 

If government-mandated health insurance is upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court after the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) case is argued in March 2012, the Institute for Justice warns in its amicus brief that there will be dire and predictable threats to individual liberty and voluntary relations that have been the foundation of American contract law for centuries. Constitutional law professor Elizabeth Price Foley, who is the executive director of the Institute's Florida Chapter and who co-authored IJ's brief, said, "The individual mandate violates a cardinal rule of contract law—to be enforceable, all agreements must be voluntary. The Framers understood this, and would never have given the federal government the power to force individuals into lifelong contracts of insurance. The Court should not allow the government to exercise this unprecedented and dangerous power." As IJ's brief shows, the principle of mutual assent, under which both parties must consent for a contract to be valid, is a fundamental principle of contract law that was well understood during the Founding era and is still a cornerstone of contract law today. Indeed, contracts entered under duress have long been held to be invalid. Yet the mandate forces individuals to enter into contracts of insurance that would never be valid under this longstanding principle. (For a copy of IJ's brief, visit: www.ij.org/PPACAbrief.) If the U.S. Supreme Court fails to strike down the individual mandate, there will be nothing to stop Congress from forcing people into other contracts against their will—employment contracts or union membership, for example. If we still have a constitutional republic in which the federal government's powers are limited, then the Court should strike down this law. The Institute for Justice's brief is the only amicus brief filed with the Court that examines this case in the context of the history of contract law. The brief illustrates how the Supreme Court has recognized the principle of consent in commercial relations in its Commerce Clause and Tenth Amendment cases, and it explains why the U.S. Supreme Court has a key role in acting as a check against this unconstitutional power grab by the federal government.

Read more

 

Embed on your site:




Freedom Flix

The Institute for Justice is always looking for new ways to promote the message of freedom. To that end, IJ produced the following videos in-house to tell the stories of our clients and their fight for individual liberty.

None of this — the cases or these videos — would be possible without the continued generosity of our donors. We hope you enjoy them and share them with those who need a little inspiration.

Subscribe to our videos via iTunes or YouTube.


   Why Can't Chuck Get His Business Off the Ground? (5:05)
Why Can't Chuck Get His Business Off the Ground?
   Arizona School Choice Fight Goes to U.S. Supreme Court (3:22)
   Camp Politics: Training the Next Generation of Censors Since 1974 (3:04)
   License to Describe: Defeating Washington D.C.'s Tour Guide Licensing Scheme (2:33)
In Washington, D.C., talking without a license can land you in jail for 90 days.
   Free the Monks & Free Enterprise: Saint Joseph Abbey v. Louisiana State Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors (2:39)
Under Louisiana law, it is a crime for anyone but a licensed funeral director to sell funeral merchandise, which includes caskets. To sell caskets legally, the monks of Saint Joseph Abbey would have to abandon their calling for one full year to apprenti
   Kelo: Five Years Later (3:51)
   Where does the alphabet end? (0:32)
The Institute for Justice believes that parents, not bureaucrats should choose what school kids attend.
   Freeing Small Farms: Minnesota Farms Fight Protectionism (2:48)
Farmers should not be threatened with 90 days in jail and $1,000 in fines for selling pumpkins or Christmas trees grown outside city limits. Yet that is the law in Lake Elmo, Minn. On December 1, 2009, the Lake Elmo City Council declared that it would beg
   Citizens United Debate Trailer (1:17)
On 6-24-10, IJ's Steve Simpson and Cato's Ilya Shapiro debated Loyola's Richard Hasen and AU's Jamin Raskin at the American University Washington College of Law. They discussed various aspects of the Citizens United decision.
   Policing for Profit - The Abuse of Civil Asset Forfeiture (2:30)
If police suspect that you committed a crime, they can arrest you and put you on trial. But if police suspect your car was involved in a crime, they can take it, sell it and, in most places, pocket the proceeds to pad their budgets.
   City of Dallas Bans Signs for Small Business (0:53)
Under a Dallas law enacted in 2008, businesses are prohibited from putting signs in the upper two-thirds of any window or glass door, and no more than 15 percent of any window or glass door may be covered by signs.
   IJ's Chip Mellor Discusses Government Mandated Licensing With John Stossel (9:58)
   IJ's Scott Bullock discusses civil forfeiture abuse with John Stossel (6:51)
   Hanging by a Thread: Defending Economic Liberty in Texas (2:29)
Eyebrow threading is a booming industry in Texas. But state bureaucrats are making it impossible to continue practicing this ancient art.
   Teaching is Not a Crime: Challenging Virginia's Unconstitutional Regulation of Yoga Teacher Training (3:05)
Anyone in Virginia can do yoga, and anyone can teach yoga. But, incredibly, it is illegal to teach people to teach yoga. Yoga-teacher training is just the latest target of vocational school licensing laws that require countless entrepreneurs to ask the go
   Saving Lives: Challenging the Ban on Compensating Bone Marrow Donors (2:49)
   Free to Design: Florida Entrepreneurs Take On the Interior Design Cartel (3:27)
A small group of well-funded industry insiders led by the American Society of Interior Designers has been relentless in its pursuit of ever more restrictive laws. Studies have shown that interior design regulations result in higher prices, less variety, a
   San Tan Flat & The Fight Against Arbitrary Government Power (3:07)
   The Campaign Finance Bait & Switch: Fair Elections Now Act (1:12)
They're at it again. The same special interests who for decades have called for government-funded political campaigns?what amounts to welfare for politicians?are again pushing something called the Fair Elections Now Act . . . a proposal that would create
   Andrea Weck & School Choice (3:51)

Email Address
Please enter a valid email address
Share

Institute for Justice
901 N. Glebe Road, Suite 900
Arlington, VA 22203
Tel 703.682.9320, Fax 703.682.9321
© 1997-2014