The Corner


An addendum regarding my post on Ted Cruz, Dianne Feinstein, and the Constitution, belowIn 2009, a reporter asked Nancy Pelosi, “Madam Speaker, where specifically does the Constitution grant Congress the authority to enact an individual health-insurance mandate?” (For a write-up of this exchange, go here.) She answered, “Are you serious? Are you serious?” The reporter said, “Yes, yes I am.” The Speaker of the House then shook her head and called on another reporter. Her press secretary later joined in the ridicule and dismissal: “You can put this on the record: That is not a serious question. That is not a serious question.”

That has been the attitude in government — and in the country at large, I would say — for a very long time. People like Ted Cruz would like to try to change that attitude. For a long time, if you asked, “Is it constitutional?” you were looked at as though you’d just arrived from outer space. San Francisco Democrats such as Pelosi and Feinstein — and, again, the country at large, I believe — apparently regard questions about constitutionality as kooky nuisances. With the likes of Cruz around, they will have to get used to it. That can only be good for the country, I believe: a rediscovery, if you will, of the Constitution.

The Constitution is not a hindrance or a killjoy. It is not merely those things. It’s here to help us — to keep the country healthy. Of course, it can be amended, if the people wish.

By the way, John Roberts might have joined with the Democratic appointees to approve Obamacare as constitutional, but the Supreme Court at least thought the constitutional question serious — which was an improvement over the onetime Speaker of the House.


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