Yesterday the Heritage Foundation released a new paper on the unconstitutionality of the proposed health care mandate. Think tanks aren’t normally in the habit of promoting their peer institutions’ work, but this paper is incredibly timely and its lead author is Cato senior fellow Randy Barnett. You really should go read it.
Interestingly, at the event unveiling the paper, Eugene Volokh (of UCLA Law School and the Volokh Conspiracy blog) at one point wanted to quote the Constitution and realized he wasn’t carrying one! Eugene asked if anyone had a Heritage Constitution. Former Attorney General Ed Meese, now chairman of Heritage’s Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, saved the day by passing Eugene his… handy, dandy, Washington Post-bestselling Cato Constitution. It seems that General Meese likes our version because it’s smaller and so fits easier into your pocket. (I would add that it also features the Declaration of Independence – as does Heritage’s – as well as a preface by my boss, Roger Pilon.)
You can watch the entire health care event, which features Senator Orrin Hatch along with Randy and Eugene, here (the Constitution bit starts at about 40:15; I ask a question at 1:04:46). The bottom line – beyond the health care abomination – is that you should always carry your Cato pocket Constitution wherever you go. Like Josh Blackman, I keep one in every suit jacket (as well as backpacks, totebags, briefcases, and roll-aboards). You never know when you – or someone else – may need it.