View Full Version : Can USG require AmCits to KBA a la Obamacare?

08-01-2010, 9:52 AM

[*Yes, I'm aware of the Kinnesaw, GA anomaly*]

A thought I've been kicking around for a while, but may have been discussed elsewhere...

Was just reading "WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE CONSTITUTION?" (http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2010/07/026882.php) and I had a thought that a lot of us probably have had over the past few months... The Dem's justification for force-feeding the US Obamacare is/was: General Welfare/Commerce Clause allows them to say non-participation in a given market == participation in that market and thus purchase of a specific product/service (healthcare for this exercise) can be mandated by Congress/USG. Heller/McDonald held that RKBA is a fundamental, enumerated right actually found right there in the Constitution itself... and therefore must be at least a little more important/fundamental than this "human right to healthcare" that they just made up and then mandated. So, since the Dem's argument seems to extend the Commerce Clause infinitely to include their apparent ability to mandate that every AmCit buys a Chevy Impala or a Westinghouse television -- or Pelosi's autobiography for that matter (*barf*) -- could that same logic be used to pass a law requiring all Americans to KBA? Certainly choosing not to purchase a firearm or ammunition is non-participation in a market and what's more, those who can't/don't/won't fend for themselves directly financially impact every other taxpayer who gets their wealth spread to pay for the protection of those irresponsible others. Seems like the argument to require KBA is inarguably stronger than that requiring us to buy health insurance. (Note: I don't think that the Dem's argument is remotely Constitutional -- the COTUS specifically states what the limits of the .gov are and does not allow Congress/POTUS to pass laws just b/c they think they're a good idea, whether or not they are -- but if they're going to give us lemons, is there a way we can make lemonade... or at least force them into a situation (libs having to KBA) which they find equally distasteful?)



08-01-2010, 10:51 AM
Are you asking if it is possible if one were to actually interpret the constitution correctly or if congress could get some law passed? Sadly, the two are very different notions.

The general welfare argument for the federal health care law makes no sense. Why would the writers of the constitution bother to specifically enumerate the powers of congress in Article 1, Section 8 if they were going to include language that allowed congress to basically do anything. It would have made more sense to just say congress can do whatever they want that promotes the general welfare and leave it at that. But they didn't. There is a list of things they can do, that list mentions very specific things that congress is allowed to pass laws about. Things like health care, the PATRIOT act, and your proposed mandate to own a gun would be unconstitutional.

Having said all that...congress doesn't seem to acknowledge Article 1, Section 8. The general population has no idea about it. Congress could easily pass a law requiring the ownership of firearms without any real legal challenges that wouldn't also directly to apply to the innumerable unconstitutional laws that have been passed in the last 100 years.

Gray Peterson
08-01-2010, 12:18 PM
The answer is yes. Militia Act of 1792 required possession of arms by regular citizens.

08-01-2010, 2:36 PM
mmmm, delicious... I would have loved to see something like this attached to the Obamacare legislation, just like Ensign's gun amendment to the DC Voting Rights Act (which ended up sinking that legislation, BTW). Wouldn't it be nice...:sleeping:


08-02-2010, 1:23 PM
The answer is yes. Militia Act of 1792 required possession of arms by regular citizens.

But this is not a Commerce Clause power. The Constitution has several sections that deal with the militia. Congress gets the power to pass the Militia Act from the militia sections of the Constitution as an enumerated power as part of it's power over the militia. There has never been any reason to believe that congress did not have the power to require every (adult) person (militia member) to have a gun and that was the law from the time of the founding until about 100 years ago.

08-02-2010, 1:53 PM
It's possible they could require fewer abbreviations in the same sentence.

08-02-2010, 4:19 PM
It's possible they could require fewer abbreviations in the same sentence.


02-01-2011, 11:29 AM
This: http://www.argusleader.com/article/20110131/UPDATES/110131031/Bill-would-require-all-S-D-citizens-buy-gun is what I meant...