It became law without both houses ever voting on the same bill. (Say, is the Constitution considered "settled law"?) Not one Republican voted for it—and a lot of Democrats immediately wished they hadn't.
Historically, big laws have been enacted with large, bipartisan majorities. In 1935, President Roosevelt enacted Social Security with a 372-33 vote in the House and 77-6 in the Senate.
Reagan's magnificent tax cuts in 1981—which Democrats now denounce as if they'd been appalled at the time—passed with a vote of 89-11 in the Senate and even 323-107 in the hostile Democratic House.
No law, certainly not one that fundamentally alters the role of the government, has ever been passed like this.
But now, this greased-through, irregular law is relentlessly defended as "settled law" and "the law of the land"! (At least the parts that Obama hasn't unconstitutionally waived—again, anybody know if the Constitution is "settled law"?)
Wow—Obamacare sounds fantastic! Not only does Congress refuse to live under it, but its proponents' strongest argument is that it's "settled law!"
The most hilarious part of the "settled law" argument is that it's coming from the left, for whom nothing is ever "settled" until they get their way—as described in my new book, Never Trust a Liberal Over Three-Especially a Republican.
Liberals seem to believe our founding fathers sought to create a country where the pushiest always win. (That's why they're the party of trial lawyers.) They want the nation's policies to be determined by a never-ending co-op board meeting dominated by the most obnoxious shareholders.
As New Yorkers are about to discover if they elect Bill de Blasio mayor, for example, liberals will never abandon their plans to hamstring cops and spring criminals. For 30 years, New York City tried the Democrats' approach to crime. The result was an explosion of murders, rapes, permanent disfigurements, robberies, car thefts and burglaries.
Then Rudy Giuliani came in and saved the city. The dramatic decrease in crime effected by Giuliani's crime policies made commerce, tourism—life!—possible again in New York.
But liberals have been biding their time, waiting for people to forget, itching to get their hands on the levers of power so they can start releasing criminals again. (Or as Democrats refer to them, "our base.")
Wasn't "stop and frisk" "settled law"? Why yes, it was, upheld in 1996 by a New York appeals court in People v. Batista. But that settled law was recently overturned by a liberal judge [VDARE.com note: appointed by Bill Clinton] in a case funded by George Soros.
Hey, does anyone know if the Second Amendment is "settled law"?
And how many dozens of states have expressly voted against gay marriage? Are we up to three dozen yet? But liberals consider repeated votes of the people merely an invitation to run to the courts to get the people's will overturned.
California voters said "no" to gay marriage in a statewide initiative to amend their constitution. State courts upheld the amendment prohibiting gay marriage. You might say the No-Gay-Marriage amendment was—what's the expression?—"settled law, upheld by the courts."
Liberal groups appealed to the federal courts, where an activist judge, who happened to be gay, issued a PC ruling overturning the will of the people. His work done, the judge then resigned from the bench.
Oh—and how has the left treated "settled law" on race preferences? The fight against racial discrimination goes back to the Civil War, Reconstruction and a slew of Republican amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
But Democrats refuse to give up discriminating on the basis of race. (They just switched which race gets screwed.) The triumph of a color-blind political system lasted for about six minutes before Democrats were at it again.
In 1996, the people of California voted to amend the state constitution to prohibit race discrimination by the state. Liberals sued and sued and sued to overturn a majority vote of the people that merely affirmed constitutional rights won by the Civil War nearly a century and a half ago.
They lost. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the amendment and the Supreme Court refused to review that ruling, making the anti-race discrimination amendment ... the "law of the land"!
Michigan voters approved a similar amendment to their state constitution in 2006. Guess what "settled law" is on its way to the Supreme Court? Again. Right now.
It's been 17 years! (One-hundred and forty-eight years, if we're counting from the end of the Civil War.)
Liberals will fight until they get their way—and, as soon as they do, they announce their one victory is "settled law."
That's what happened with Obamacare. Weren't Americans reasonably clear about not wanting a hostile takeover of our health care system the last time Democrats tried it?
Hillarycare was so widely reviled that the majority Democratic Congress never held an up-or-down vote on it. In the very next election, the public punished Democrats for even thinking about nationalizing health care by voting in a Republican Congress for the first time in almost half a century.
Obamacare wasn't passed because the nation changed its mind. We got Obamacare because, at a brief moment in time, the Democrats happened to have aberrationally large majorities in the House and Senate, as well as the presidency. It was quickly and unconstitutionally enacted on a strictly party-line vote.
In the very next election, the American people elected 63 new Republicans to the House of Representatives—the largest sweep of Congress for any party since 1948. Even liberal Massachusetts elected a Republican senator solely because of his vow to vote against Obamacare.
This is why the duly elected Republican majority in the House keeps funding the entire federal government—except Obamacare. Or except Congress' exemption from Obamacare. Or except the individual mandate that Obama has already waived for his big-business friends.
"Settled law" has nothing to do with it. When Republicans won't give up on an issue, it is because they are defending the will of the people, not pushing some harebrained scheme cooked up by a small group of zealots and imposed on the nation by an activist judge or freak Congress.
When Democrats refuse to give up on an issue, it's against the will of the people with one party laughing, "Ha ha! We have 60 votes!"