Yesterday, U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson refused to dismiss a lawsuit, filed by Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, challenging the constitutionality of the recently passed healthcare reform bill. This procedural ruling will likely lead to years of litigation surrounding the law, which many constitutional law experts believe is well in line with the parameters of the Commerce Clause and Congressional authority.
But much as we have seen, this is just another example of right-wing judges pursuing an ideological agenda to harm progressive goals. Though Judge Hudson’s ruling (see career background here) did not explicitly discuss the merits of the case, it’s pretty clear which side he would rule on, according to Steven Schwinn at the Constitutional Law Prof Blog:
[H]e clearly framed the issues in terms of Virginia’s theory of the case–that the mandate is a regulation of a decision not to participate in the interstate economy–and commented throughout on the "complex constitutional issues”. . . The federal government will likely have a tough time getting Judge Hudson to move away from Virginia’s view of the case.
This is yet another reason why conservatives are so intently set on packing the courts with right-wing extremists. Time will tell if their strategy works with regards to ideological courts bending the law in order to strike down healthcare reform.