Not everyone thinks health care law suit is a loser

Michigan Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Mike Cox has been drawing some heat for joining other state attorneys general in a Florida-based law suit that challenges the constitutional basis of the recently enacted federal health care law.

Gov. Jennifer Granholm gave him a scolding a while back. See, The Michigan Lawyer, “Who’s the Boss?”

There, I noted that some legal experts have opined that the suit “has about as much of a chance as a snowball in, let’s say, Florida. See, The Michigan Lawyer ‘Cox says he’ll challenge health care law.'”

I’m here today to tell you that Cox has marshaled some support for the idea that the suit has merit.

From Dawson Bell’s report in The Detroit Free Press:

Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox’s legal challenge to sweeping federal health care legislation is a “serious constitutional claim” that has been too readily dismissed by law scholars and some politicians, a Georgetown University law professor said Tuesday.

Randy Barnett, the Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Legal Theory at Georgetown, said there is a realistic possibility the U.S. Supreme Court ultimately could invalidate several of the new law’s key provisions as congressional overreach. Barnett was invited by Cox to speak to reporters Tuesday.

Barnett said Congress has never before asserted the authority to require individuals to make a specific purchase or be fined — as the health care legislation would, under a mandate that all American citizens have insurance or pay a fee to the government. …

Barnett conceded that a majority of scholars across the country have expressed the view that courts will defer to Congress and President Barack Obama on the constitutionality of the health care law.

But he said he thinks that is because many of them have not closely read recent decisions by the court on the limits of federal power.

Scott Davis, reporting in The Lansing State Journal, also has a good take on the topic.