Unconstitutional under the commerce clause but OK as a tax vastly expanding federal power.
But the president said on many occasions the healthcare mandate was not a tax. HA!
Anyway, go here to Ann Althouse blog (constitutional lawyer at Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison) for some interesting posts. Just hit the link and scroll down. No I have not read them all myself yet...
This from one of her posts - the famous (infamous?) Stephanopoulus interview
UPDATE: Drudge points to Obama's assertion, back in September 2009 that the mandate is not a tax.
STEPHANOPOULOS: [I]t's still a tax increase.
OBAMA: No. That's not true, George. The — for us to say that you've got to take a responsibility to get health insurance is absolutely not a tax increase. What it's saying is, is that we're not going to have other people carrying your burdens for you anymore than the fact that right now everybody in America, just about, has to get auto insurance. Nobody considers that a tax increase. People say to themselves, that is a fair way to make sure that if you hit my car, that I'm not covering all the costs.
I have said repeatedly that Obama would be worse off if Obamacare were upheld, but what I'm really seeing is how bad it is for him with the mandate declared a tax.
That's Ann Althouse' opinion, not mine.
UPDATE: Here's the key clause in the Supreme Court opinion -
Our precedent demonstrates that Congress had the power to impose the exaction in Section 5000A under the taxing power, and that Section 5000A need not be read to do more than impose a tax. This is sufficient to sustain it.