RICHMOND, Va. — “Our disappointment not only stems from the fact that the court ruled against us, but also that the court did not even reach the merits on the key question of Virginia’s lawsuit — whether Congress has a power never before recognized in American history: the power to force one citizen to purchase a good or service from another citizen,” Cuccinelli said.
The Justice Department did not immediately respond to emails seeking comment.
In the Liberty case, the court ruled 2-1 that the appeals court did not have jurisdiction to rule on the case because federal law prohibits challenging a tax before it is collected.
Judge Andre Davis dissented in the Liberty case, writing that he believed the court did have jurisdiction. Furthermore, Davis wrote that if the court had ruled on the constitutional issue, he would hold that the health care reform law is a constitutional exercise of congressional power under the Commerce Clause.
“We believe that this decision is clearly wrong,” said Liberty attorney Mat Staver. “It goes against every other court decision in the country and it goes against even the interpretation of the U.S. Department of Justice regarding the law.”