Small Business Confident after Supreme Court Argument

Below is a statement issued a few minutes ago regarding this afternoon’s events at the Supreme Court..

Albany (March 27, 2012) – The group representing small businesses in the Supreme Court this week in the landmark case against the federal health care law expressed confidence in its argument today that individual American’s cannot be forced by Congress to buy anything.

“We focused on the question today that the government has been unable to answer – if President Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid can force you to buy health care, then is there anything they can’t make you do,” said Mike Durant, New York State Director for the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB).

Durant was briefed today after the morning session, during which constitutional expert Michael Carvin, representing NFIB, pushed the group’s main argument against the so-called individual mandate portion of the federal Affordable Care Act.

“We’ve argued from the beginning that the Constitution does not permit the federal government to command individual Americans to buy health insurance,” said Durant.  “Based on what I heard today, the government’s lawyers are still having a hard time identifying any limits on Congress’ power over individual liberty.  That’s very troubling and I think it makes our case stronger.”

The Court will hear arguments tomorrow as well and then it is expected to deliberate on whether the federal law is constitutional.  A decision is expected in June.

“This is a case that has implications beyond health care,” said Durant.  “For the last 70 years the federal government has used the commerce clause to interfere in deeper and deeper into the activities of local businesses, local consumers and private citizens.  If we win this case, there will finally be a line in the sand that the federal government can’t cross.”

For more information about NFIB, please visit

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About Mike Durant

Mike Durant was named New York State Director of NFIB in May 2011. Prior to joining NFIB as the Assistant State Director in May 2010, Durant began his career in the New York Senate working in the Office of Member Services. From there, he served in a number of positions during former New York Governor George E. Pataki’s administration. As a Research Specialist in the New York State Office of Demographic Policy, Mike was responsible for drafting a redistricting proposal for Governor Pataki. In addition, Mike served as a Research Specialist for the Empire State Development Corporation, as well as the Associate Commissioner of Human Resource Management with the New York Department of Labor. Durant also spent four years working at the Questar III BOCES as a specialist focusing on the complex formulas that drive aid to school districts across the state while also taking a lead role in the state legislative/budget process as it related to education policy. These past positions have given Mike a deep understanding of the complex political economics of the State of New York. Active in the community, Durant has served on a number of boards in both the village of Ballston Spa and Town of Milton. Durant received his bachelor’s degree from Siena College in Loudonville, New York and resides in Ballston Spa with his wife and two children.
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