Many people who oppose the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act”, also known as ‘Obamacare’, say the Founding Fathers wouldn’t have wanted the Government to make health insurance mandatory for private employees.
This is simply not true. In 1798, under 2nd President and Founding Father John Adams, the United States passed a law requiring mandatory health insurance for any private employees working on Maritime vessels. The bill was called “An Act for The Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen”
It’s safe to assume that John Adams, who was the first Vice President of this country, the 2nd President of this Country, one of the Founding Fathers, and was a key negotiator in the peace treaty between the United States and Britain, had a pretty clear idea of what the Founding Fathers would have been alright with.
The ink was barely dry on the PPACA [Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act] when the first of many lawsuits to block the mandated health insurance provisions of the law was filed in a Florida District Court.
The pleadings, in part, read -
The Constitution nowhere authorizes the United States to mandate, either directly or under threat of penalty, that all citizens and legal residents have qualifying health care coverage.
It turns out, the Founding Fathers would beg to disagree.
In July of 1798, Congress passed – and President John Adams signed -“An Act for the Relief of Sick and Disabled Seamen.” The law authorized the creation of a government operated marine hospital service and mandated that privatelyemployed sailors be required to purchase health care insurance.
Keep in mind that the 5th Congress did not really need to struggle over the intentions of the drafters of the Constitutions in creating this Act as many of its members were the drafters of the Constitution.
And when the Bill came to the desk of President John Adams for signature, I think it’s safe to assume that the man in that chair had a pretty good grasp on what the framers had in mind.