In a brief defending the law, the Justice Department says the requirement for people to carry insurance or pay the penalty is “a valid exercise” of Congress’s power to impose taxes.In other words, the DOJ will defend state lawsuits on the grounds that health care mandates are actually a tax. But from September 20, 2009:
Congress can use its taxing power “even for purposes that would exceed its powers under other provisions” of the Constitution, the department said. For more than a century, it added, the Supreme Court has held that Congress can tax activities that it could not reach by using its power to regulate commerce.
OK, perhaps this can be explained somehow. Because otherwise..