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After verbally pummelling the government for usurping power it doesn’t deserve, the Supreme Court dissenters tackled the Medicaid expansion.Justices Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, and Samuel Alito co-authored a brutal dissent where they called out the government for trying to strong-arm states into expanding their Medicaid programs.
“Congress may not ‘simply commandeer the legislative processes of the states by directly compelling them to enact and enforce a federal regulatory program,” the dissenters decreed.
The high court declared as unconstitutional Obamacare’s threats to yank states’ Medicaid funding if they don’t comply with the federal government’s expansion of the program. The majority upheld the expansion itself, though.
While the four justices acknowledged the federal government didn’t legally try to force states to participate in the program, it imposes “a severe sanction” for any state that opts out.
That severe sanction comes down in the form of terminating all of that state’s Medicaid funding.
The dissenters criticised the government for making a habit of attaching spending conditions to any federal grant and cautions Congress that it can’t cross the “point at which pressure turns into compulsion and ceases to be inducement,” according to the dissent.
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