Senator Nelson Says Not Sure Where Congress Gets Constitutional Authority to Require Health Insurance

November 10, 2009 - 9:25 PM
Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) told CNSNews.com that because he is not sure if he is a "constitutional scholar," he is unable to pinpoint where in the Constitution Congress gets its authority to mandate that every American have health insurance.
(CNSNews.com) - Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) told CNSNews.com that because he is not sure if he is a “constitutional scholar,” he is unable to pinpoint where in the Constitution Congress gets its authority to mandate that every American have health insurance, as the House and Senate health care reform bills require.
 
CNSNews.com asked the Senator, “Specifically, where in the Constitution does Congress get its authority to mandate that individuals purchase health insurance?”
 
Nelson said: “Well you know, I, I don’t know that I’m a constitutional scholar so, I don’t, I, I’m not going to be able to answer that question.”
 

 
The senator then turned away to answer another reporter’s question.
 
Below is a transcript of the exchange between Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) and CNSNews.com:
 
CNSNews.com: “Specifically, where in the Constitution does Congress get its authority to mandate that individuals purchase health, health insurance?”
 
Senator Nelson: “Well you know, I, I don’t know that I’m a constitutional scholar so, I don’t, I, I’m not going to be able to answer that question.”