Should the Supreme Court, as the InTrade prophets suggest, strike down the PPACA the Chamber of Commerce will have completed a perfect term at the Supreme Court. And given that among these decisions was finding a “right to work” requirement somewhere in the back of the First Amendment, we can expect to see some, ah, innovative, constitutional arguments being advanced on behalf of business interests.
Such as, for example, a specious argument that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau violates the sacred constitutional right of Republicans to water down consumer-protection regulations into meaninglessness:
A Texas community bank and two advocacy groups are filing suit in U.S. District Court to challenge the constitutionality of the Dodd-Frank financial reform law.
In particular, the suit will contend that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), created by the law, lacks sufficient checks and balances and, in the words of the CEO of State National Bank, is “simply unconstitutional.”
House Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.) used the court challenge to renew the push for a board of directors.
“There is no question the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau – by the design of Dodd-Frank Act supporters – lacks accountability and transparency,” he said in a statement. “A bipartisan commission would help ensure that CFPB rules are balanced, fair and reasonable…This is a structure that has worked well for nearly every other regulatory body in this country and will work for the CFPB.”
Maybe your copy of the Constitution doesn’t give bipartisan commissions approved by Spencer Bauchus veto power over legislation duly passed by Congress, but you lack the real Federalist Society version with the word “suckers” in it. Anyway, the “separation of powers” argument being made here is obviously specious. The CFPB doesn’t eliminate “checks and balances”; Congress is free to modify or eliminate its authority at any time, the director can be removed for cause, and judicial supervision has not been entirely eliminated. The Constitution doesn’t specify any particular form of accountability for executive agencies. And moreover, for all but followers of Ron Paul the argument proves too much; if the CFPB is unconstitutional, then the entire Federal Reserve structure is really unconstitutional.
None of which means that a bare majority of the Supreme Court won’t buy the argument, of course.