CEI Daily - Obamacare, Eminent Domain, and Trade Wars




Yesterday, a Virginia federal judge ruled federal health care legislation unconstitutional.


General Counsel Sam Kazman commends the judge's decision.


"Judge Hudson’s ruling is a welcome reaffirmation of the Constitution’s limits on the federal government.  Those limits are totally at odds with the Obama Administration’s attempt, in its individual mandate provision, to transform a person’s decision not to buy health insurance into an activity subject to Congress’s power over interstate commerce.  Because this ruling comes only days before the anniversary of the Senate’s rushed Christmas Eve vote on Obamacare, it is, quite frankly, a great way to start off the New Year."




Eminent Domain


The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear a challenge to a New York property taking in a Columbia University development case.


Policy Analyst Marc Scribner explains why the court is wrong not to hear the case.


"New York State, which has one of the worst eminent domain statutes in the nation, has long abused the broad blight standard established in Berman. Area blight condemnations allow a government agency, or a public corporation authorized by a state or municipality, to declare private property 'blighted' even when the parcels in question do not meet the standard. This puts lower- to middle-income urban entrepreneurs and homeowners at a significant disadvantage, as they often live or operate in neighborhood with some abandoned or dilapidated property."



Trade Wars


The WTO has announced that the U.S. did not break trade obligations to China by imposing tariffs on Chinese tires.


Research Associate Brian McGraw explains why the tire tariffs were a mistake.


"What happened as a result of the tire tariffs? Tire prices rose, imports from other Asian countries increased, and China retaliated by slapping tariffs on steel, chemicals, and poultry. Was one specific industry maintaining higher employment? Quite likely, at the expense of taxpayers and jobs in other industries with less political clout — while doing much to delay real progress on liberalizing trade in the United States."