SocraticGadfly: Is the "fiscal cliff" bill unconstitutional?

January 04, 2013

Is the "fiscal cliff" bill unconstitutional?

In a pondering thought that should make everybody to the left of tea partiers shit bricks (and why did none of them think about it?) I wonder if the fiscal cliff legislation doesn't violate the Constitution because it was started in the U.S. Senate and it's a money bill.

Per Article 1, Section 7:
All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.
It seems pretty clear.

And, as not only a tax bill, in part, but a bill that increased certain taxes and tax rates, it's a revenue bill, per and simple.

I think it is unconstitutional. I'm still surprised that no House tea partier has filed for an injunction in court.

That said, per a friend of mine on Facebook, the Senate apparently had an attack of "oops, Houston, we have a problem."

So, the House passed HR 8 as a "dummy bill" and the Senate amended it to stick in all the original bill language.

But, somebody might argue an "ex post facto" fix doesn't count, or at least that it didn't count until after this "fix." Still, it shows how dysfunctional Congress has become. And, this WILL be remembered in six weeks by tea partiers in the House, you can count on that.

1 comment:

hedera said...

Jim thinks they did some kind of end-around to make it legal; but I think you're right. I'm afraid I think no Tea Partier has challenged it because none of them knows what the Constitution says...