Today a federal judge in Virginia, responding to a suit filed by the state’s far-right Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, ruled that a key part of health care reform was unconstitutional. The judge, Henry E. Hudson, said that the Constitution’s “interstate commerce clause” does not provide the federal government the right to implement a mandate to make sure that everyone has health insurance coverage. A different federal judge in Virginia dismissed a similar suit brought by Liberty University against the reform law only two weeks ago.
Judge Hudson was first appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1986 to be US Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and in 2002, George W. Bush appointed him to serve as district court judge for Virginia’s Eastern District.
According to disclosure forms, Judge Hudson reported collecting “dividends” totaling anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000 from Campaign Solutions over a five year period of 2003 to 2008. Campaign Solutions later acknowledged that Hudson has owned stock in the firm since it was founded.
Campaign Solutions has a long record of working with conservative organizations and Republican candidates, including none other than Ken Cuccinelli. As the Alliance for Justice points out, “Campaign Solutions, has done work for a host of prominent Republican clients and health care reform critics, including the RNC and NRCC (both of which have called, to varying degrees, for health care reform’s repeal).”
Along with Cuccinnelli, who was elected Attorney General in 2009, Campaign Solutions worked for John McCain and Bush’s presidential campaigns, the notorious Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, and the Judicial Confirmation Network (since renamed the Judicial Crisis Network). In fact, Campaign Solutions was behind the establishment of the JCN, which was founded to support George W. Bush’s conservative judicial nominees and coordinate activities right-wing organizations, especially with Religious Right groups, although the JCN has since changed its name and works to oppose the confirmation of Obama’s nominees.
In 2008, The New Republic found that the JCN “publicly consists of two employees, a post box, and a website” and was “originally created in November 2004 by Becki Donatelli, a Republican PR doyenne who chairs Campaign Solutions (the firm used by Bush-Cheney ‘04, McCain 2008, the RNC, the NRCC, and even the 527 Vets For Freedom).”
As reported earlier today, according to legal expert Tim Jost, who has been following the many health care reform decisions being issues, “This decision is very defective and will be reversed by the appellate court or the Supreme Court.”