By Sam Baker - 10/14/11 06:19 PM EDT
The NFIB brief reiterates its argument that Congress doesn’t have the authority to make people buy a product simply because they are citizens. It says upholding the mandate would open the floodgates for a new level of congressional power.
“Indeed, if the Rubicon were crossed to sustain this health-insurance mandate, well-established precedent holds that there would be no judicially cognizable limit on what purchases Congress could compel,” the brief states.
The Justice Department and supporters of the mandate argue that the healthcare market is unique because the costs of caring for uninsured people are passed on to the government and people who have insurance. Because no other product or service has the same type of cost-shifting, they say, the mandate isn’t a slippery slope to greater government intervention outside the healthcare arena.