Issue: (1) Whether Congress has the authority under the Commerce Clause to force employers to buy or provide employees with government defined health insurance at a rate the government defines as affordable with no option to discontinue coverage without facing excessive punitive fines; (2) whether Congress has authority under the Taxing and Spending Clause to impose excessive punitive fines on employers enforced by the Departments of Treasury and Labor for failing or refusing to buy or provide government defined health insurance at a rate the government defines as affordable with no option to discontinue coverage without facing excessive punitive fines; (3) whether the Employer Mandate and its implementing regulations violate the Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the First Amendment Free Exercise of Religion Clause by forcing religious employers to buy or provide contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs and devices to their employees despite their sincerely-held religious beliefs that prevent them from doing so; (4) whether the Individual Mandate violates the Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the First Amendment Free Exercise of Religion Clause by forcing certain individuals to make a monthly payment that directly funds abortion contrary to their sincerely-held religious beliefs that prevent them from doing so; and (5) whether the Fourth Circuit erred when it refused to review the Employer Mandate and its implementing regulations as they existed at the time of the Circuit Court’s review, which included regulatory definitions of preventive care services that Congress determined had to be provided as part of minimum essential health insurance coverage, which include, inter alia, that employers must buy or provide contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs and devices to their employees.
On Monday the Court granted five new cases and called for the views of the Solicitor General in one new case. Lyle reported on those orders. On Tuesday the Court issued two opinions. Tuesday's live blog is archived here. On Wednesday the Court issued three opinions. Wednesday's live blog is archived here. This is the second week of the February sitting. On Friday, the Justices will meet for their March 7 Conference. Our list of “Petitions to watch” for that Conference is here.
Upcoming Oral Arguments
Wood v. Moss Secret Service agents’ plea for immunity from lawsuit for actions taken against demonstrators who were opposed to the president’s policies.
Clark v. Rameker Whether an Individual Retirement Account that an individual inherited rather than created personally is exempted from a bankruptcy estate
Catsimatidis v. Irizarry Whether an individual may be held personally liable
for a corporation’s violation of the Fair Labor
Standards Act merely
because the individual had general control over corporate
affairs, but exercised no personal responsibility
over the conduct that caused the violation.
Justice Elena Kagan delivers the 2014 Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Lecture on Women and the Law at the New York City Bar Association, where (among other things) she attributes the “gulf between Justice Ginsburg’s career and” hers to the work of Justice Ginsburg herself.
Awarded the Peabody Award for excellence in electronic media.
Sigma Delta Chi
Awarded the Sigma Delta Chi deadline reporting award for online coverage of the Affordable Care Act decision.
National Press Club Award
Awarded the National Press Club's Breaking News Award for coverage of the Affordable Care Act decision.
Silver Gavel Award
Awarded the Silver Gavel Award by the American Bar Association for fostering the American public’s understanding of the law and the legal system.
American Gavel Award
Awarded the American Gavel Award for Distinguished Reporting About the Judiciary to recognize the highest standards of reporting about courts and the justice system.