Thursday, March 25, 2010

So Much for Republicans Praising "Tort Reform"

Isn't it funny how Republicans always complain about "frivolous law suits"... Until they start filing their own? That's what I'm thinking about this new GOoPer plan to have a bunch of wingnut GOoPer state Attorneys General (AGs) file law suits against health care reform. They claim it's unconstitutional, but Steve Sebelius has already pointed out they're not on solid legal ground.

Although ["Luv-Guv"] Gibbons seems confident that the health-care bill is unconstitutional, many people disagree with him (not least of whom is President Obama himself, a Harvard-trained former law professor). Health-care supporters make a strong case that the bill they championed is allowed under the Constitution’s language empowering Congress to provide for the general welfare, the so-called elastic clause, which allows Congress to enact laws necessary and proper for carrying into execution the powers to provide for the general welfare, and to regulate commerce among the several states. To those people, an argument on Tenth Amendment grounds — that the power to enact health-care reform or require residents to buy health insurance is reserved to the states or the people — is baseless, since the Constitution specifically delegates to Congress the power to provide for the general welfare and regulate interstate commerce.

And yes, you heard him right... "Luv-Guv" Gibbons is trying to force our AG, Catherine Cortez Masto (D), to join the law suit. Unfortunately for him however (and fortunately for all of us!), she's not interested in his ridiculous political games.

Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto on Wednesday pushed back against calls to sue the federal government over health care reform, saying she will evaluate the bill and won’t make a decision until completing a “thorough legal analysis.”

Gov. Jim Gibbons has called on Masto, a Democrat, to sue, saying state law gives him the authority to direct the attorney general to take legal action.

But Cortez Masto, in a response sent Wednesday, said that the state’s constitution created her office to be the state’s chief legal officer.

“I must be satisfied in my own professional judgment that the case has merit and should be filed,” she wrote. “I also have the responsibility to decide how and when litigation is conducted.”

She also wrote that she must follow professional standards. “As an attorney yourself,” she wrote Gibbons, “you understand an attorney must certify that any litigation is warranted by existing law or by non-frivolous argument and that any pleading presented to a court cannot be presented for any improper purpose.”

And good on AG Cortez Masto for being the sane voice in Carson City! I know Mr. Sebelius doesn't mind seeing this law suit progress its way through the courts (until it finally has no more legal legs to stand upon!), but I'm glad he also sees that enough teabagger wannabes have already filed suit that there's no need for the State of Nevada to waste our tax dollars on this overtly political ploy to smear Harry Reid and make President Obama look bad.

Yes, you heard me right. The GOoPers don't give a rat's @ss about the Constitution. If they did, they would have challenged George W. Bush all the times when he overstepped his authority to declare war or torture or wiretap without a court warrant. Rather, it's all about politics for them. It's all about appeasing the teabaggers by throwing baseless attacks at Democrats.

Whatever. I feel for all the residents in those other states where their AGs are wasting their tax dollars to fight much needed health care reform. Still, I'm glad it's looking like we won't have to suffer the same fate. Thanks, Attorney General Cortez Masto, for making this decision on the merits of the law and not the political whims of the Nevada GOP.

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