NFIB v. Sebelius: Federalism


In NFIB v. Sibelius, one of the most controversial Supreme Court decisions in recent history, the Supreme Court considered the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. At issue was not only the constitutional authority of Congress to mandate that citizens purchase health insurance, but also whether or not Congress could require the states to expand their Medicaid programs significantly. The Court’s decision exemplifies its willingness to approve of and participate in unconstitutional expansions of government power.


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Kevin Portteus is associate professor of politics at Hillsdale College. He received his B.A. from Ashland University and his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Dallas.