First the disclaimer: I am not an authority on constitutional law. In my years on the bench, I, whenever possible, substituted my version of practical common sense in lieu of theories of expertise. My definition of justice was "to what was right." Of course, that brought into play my life's experiences and qualified me as the most activist judge in the land. But, I digress, except to note that I shall never shed that mantle, for it is self-defining.
Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution declares that"THE CONGRESS SHALL HAVE POWER TO LAY AND COLLECT TAXES, DUTIES, IMPORTS AND EXCISES,TO PAY FOR DEBTS AND PROVIDE FOR THE COMMON DEFENCE AND GENERAL WELFARE OF THE UNITED STATES......"
Historically, the core belief of the Democratic party is that government should address problems embraced by the arena of public social agenda. The Republican theory would have government refrain from such action, except in dire national emergency, and, even then, look to the role of the states rather than invite the federal authorities to play the evil Big Daddy.
I, however, believe that in matters of sweeping social agendas, on a national scale, Congress has the right, and indeed, the duty to step in and do the right thing. (See Social Security)
Where do they get this power? Not from the Commerce Clause of the Constitution (which led to the ridiculous analogy , offered by the conservative Supreme Court Justices, of being ordered to buy broccoli) but from the legislative taxing authority to provide for the national general welfare.
For, is not the individual mandate provision of the health care law, with a financial penalty for non-adherence, akin to a tax? Of course it is. And this should be the basis for affirming its constitutionality.
On what is this proposition grounded?
The practical, common sense, desire to do the right thing.
Who dares deny that this was not the original intent of the constitutional framers?
Too simplistic an approach? Consider the difference between being "intelligent" and "smart."
Come down to earth. It's a great vantage point for reasonable practicality.