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  Supreme Court upholds health-care law, individual mandate
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ContributorAndy 
Last EditedBrandon  Jun 28, 2012 11:58am
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CategoryLegal Ruling
AuthorRobert Barnes and N.C. Aizenman
MediaNewspaper - Washington Post
News DateThursday, June 28, 2012 04:30:00 PM UTC0:0
DescriptionThe Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the individual health-insurance mandate that is at the heart of President Obama’s landmark health-care law, saying the mandate is permissible under Congress’s taxing authority.

The potentially game-changing, election-year decision — a major victory for the White House less than five months before the November elections --will help redefine the power of the national government and affect the health-care choices of millions of Americans.
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D:1RP ( 3311.3784 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 06:57:57 PM UTC0:00
Monsieur: The four dissenters wrote it together.

It's a joint opinion, but only one judge writes it. The others concur.

 
IND:1196Monsieur ( 5890.8623 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:02:12 PM UTC0:00
No. One of them may have written it, but there is no way to know which one from the face of the decision, unlike with the Roberts and Ginsburg decisions (and with many decisions of the court). it has been released as a joint authorship.

You may want to actually look at the decision before commenting on it.

 
P:130karin1492 ( 609.4522 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:03:15 PM UTC0:00
For what it's worth, Kennedy was the one who read the dissent in Court today. That's why I assumed he wrote the dissent.

 
IND:1196Monsieur ( 5890.8623 points)
x2
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:09:36 PM UTC0:00
The dangers of breaking news:



 
D:1RP ( 3311.3784 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:35:04 PM UTC0:00
Monsieur: No. One of them may have written it, but there is no way to know which one from the face of the decision, unlike with the Roberts and Ginsburg decisions (and with many decisions of the court). it has been released as a joint authorship.

You may want to actually look at the decision before commenting on it.

“In the case of the Affordable Care Act, Congress went to great lengths to structure the mandate as a penalty, not a tax,” Kennedy wrote for the dissenters. “But the majority now says that it is a tax, at least for the purpose of sustaining it.” - [Link]

 
D:479Brandon ( 1558.3782 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:36:15 PM UTC0:00
Monsieur: No. One of them may have written it, but there is no way to know which one from the face of the decision, unlike with the Roberts and Ginsburg decisions (and with many decisions of the court). it has been released as a joint authorship.

Ryan is right. It was a joint opinion. Further, it isn't even necessarily the case the one of them wrote this. It was likely a collaborative effort. Kennedy's reading it from the bench could mean nothing more than that the four of them wanted to highlight him since he's viewed as the "swing" justice.

 
IND:1196Monsieur ( 5890.8623 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:38:28 PM UTC0:00
McClatchy is either wrong or they have inside access to the court, but for historical purposes it was jointly authored.

 
R:801400 ( 26.6800 points)
x6
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:51:50 PM UTC0:00
Big win for Obama. Bigger win for insurance companies.

 
D:411Picimpalious ( 1229.6810 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:53:49 PM UTC0:00
As much as I don't like the mandate in theory, in practice I don't think it will matter that much.

Very few extra people will be buying health insurance. Most of the uninsured will go on Medicaid.

 
D:479Brandon ( 1558.3782 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:54:14 PM UTC0:00
Now there is some speculation that Roberts may have inititally voted to strike down the mandate entirely, but later changed his mind during the drafting and circulation of opinions. The dissenting opinion in a few places refers to Justice Gingburg's opinion as a "dissent," which it was not. Unclear whether this is referencing her specific disagreements with Roberts on commerce power, or whether her entire opinion was originally a dissent.

Interesting, and I'm very much looking forward to finding out how these deliberations unfolded, though it may be years before we learn.

 
R:1490Imperator ( 2248.3596 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 07:59:21 PM UTC0:00
The more I reflect on this, the more I'm starting to think that Roberts may be the most brilliant mind to join the Court since John Marshall.

 
D:633WesternDem ( 892.4465 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 08:05:26 PM UTC0:00
How so?

 
D:15COSDem ( 3540.3062 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 08:07:48 PM UTC0:00
And the spin for Roberts' vote begins.

 
R:1490Imperator ( 2248.3596 points)
x4
Thu, June 28, 2012 08:15:55 PM UTC0:00
He upheld the government's action while overturning their reasoning, bearing powerful political ramifications, and he revitalized the small government rallying point while sustaining the prestige of the Court at the expense of his own. It's a Marbury-esque, lose the battle win the war, master-stroke. Whether I'm right, we'll know in November.

 
D:479Brandon ( 1558.3782 points)
x5
Thu, June 28, 2012 08:16:07 PM UTC0:00
The spin I'm hearing is that Roberts did this on purpose to help Romney because he still needed the mandate as a campaign issue. I can't fathom a more preposterous notion.

 
D:633WesternDem ( 892.4465 points)
x3
Thu, June 28, 2012 08:22:17 PM UTC0:00
Ah yes, the stage of grief where a loss is actually part of a brilliant, masterful plan for ultimate victory.

 
D:7CA Pol Junkie ( 2702.2412 points)
x3
Thu, June 28, 2012 08:25:18 PM UTC0:00
Imperator: He upheld the government's action while overturning their reasoning, bearing powerful political ramifications, and he revitalized the small government rallying point while sustaining the prestige of the Court at the expense of his own.

Roberts improved the prestige of both the Court and himself by not being a Republican hack.

 
R:801400 ( 26.6800 points)
x4
Thu, June 28, 2012 08:40:32 PM UTC0:00
There are sincere Constitutional grounds to oppose the individual mandate, among other aspects of the legislation. You disagree. That's fine. The Court apparently saw it your way.

However, that doesn't make me or anybody else a "Republican hack."

 
D:479Brandon ( 1558.3782 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 08:51:08 PM UTC0:00
Agreed. Kennedy is a good example of how a principled jurist can reach an entirely different result than the one the Court endorsed.

 
D:7CA Pol Junkie ( 2702.2412 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 09:09:27 PM UTC0:00
00: However, that doesn't make me or anybody else a "Republican hack."

One doesn't become a Republican hack by disagreeing with me; one becomes a Republican hack by ignoring Court precedent (or even one's own) to reverse engineer a politically desired ruling. Ginsburg included citation of Scalia's concurrence in Raich to point out his monumental hackitude.

 
D:479Brandon ( 1558.3782 points)
x5
Thu, June 28, 2012 09:14:18 PM UTC0:00
Scalia is a pure politician. That really ought to be clear after his dissent in Arizona v. U.S. for anyone to whom it wasn't already.

 
R:194Scott³ ( 8016.0796 points)
x2 x2
Thu, June 28, 2012 09:15:40 PM UTC0:00
Imperator: Major fail.

It was like the Supreme Court just gave the US economy a permanent F-U.

 
I:1038MD Indy ( 884.9736 points)
x3
Thu, June 28, 2012 09:17:24 PM UTC0:00
Well, no. But even if we accept your premise, it's not the Court's domain to decide what's good for the economy - just to find what the government can and cannot do.

 
D:1658Homegrown Democrat ( 758.3651 points)
x4 x4
Thu, June 28, 2012 09:47:36 PM UTC0:00

 
R:656zorkpolitics ( 252.5208 points)
Thu, June 28, 2012 10:24:08 PM UTC0:00
From a Conservative point of view there are a few good points to this ruling:
1) Since the healthcare law is now a "tax" most of its provisions can be repealed via budget reconciliation so Republicans do not need to overcome a 60 vote filibuster
2) This ruling limits the Commerce Clause potentially restricting the growth of future social programs
3) By striking down the forced expansion of Medicaid, this ruling limits the Fed's ability to coerce states to expand social programs.