Commerce Clause abuse is a Liberal mainstay. Article I, Section 8, Clause 3, simply states: “[The Congress shall have power] To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian tribes.” Thus, the original purpose of the Commerce Clause was primarily to eliminate trade barriers among the states.
Nowhere in the Commerce Clause does it provide the power to regulate commerce within a state. This is in keeping with the Tenth Amendment: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
In a 1942 Supreme Court ruling against Filburn, a small farmer was fined for growing 12 acres of wheat above his government allotment on his own land for his own use.
More recently and closer to home, the Court decided that the Commerce Clause permits Congress to prohibit the medicinal use of cannabis (Gonzales vs Raich), even though two California women following doctors’ recommendations only grew six cannabis plants on their own property for their own use .
However, as our new local marijuana dispensary illustrates, enforcement of the federal Controlled Substances Act is arbitrary and capricious. For example, Congress has permitted all fifty states to erect the type of barriers that the Commerce Clause was written precisely to tear down, the barring of insurers from selling policies to people in another state.
Which brings us to the mandated healthcare so lavishly praised by Liberals. In the words of Ben Stein, "(It’s hypocritical) that Obama wants every citizen to prove they are insured, but people don't have to prove they are citizens."
It can’t get any more arbitrary and capricious than that.