on Mar 28, 2012 at 9:52 am
Yesterday the Court heard oral argument on the constitutionality of the individual mandate provision in the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Kali gathered early coverage of the argument yesterday afternoon and coverage of the arguments continued to roll in throughout the night. At this blog, Lyle Denniston provides a detailed analysis of the arguments advanced by the government and the mandate’s challengers, and suggests that “[i]f Anthony M. Kennedy can locate a limiting principle in the federal government’s defense of the new individual health insurance mandate, or can think of one on his own, the mandate may well survive.” Also at this blog Amy provides a Plain English reaction to the arguments and Tom comments on the advocates. Additional coverage is provided by Bloomberg; the New York Times; the Washington Post’s Wonkblog and Right Turn; the Los Angeles Times’s John Healey and David G. Savage and Noam N. Levey; USA Today; the Associated Press; Jess Bravin, Janet Adamy, and Brent Kendall of the Wall Street Journal; the New Republic; NPR; ABC News (here and here); the National Law Journal; McClatchy Newspapers; the Atlantic; New York Magazine; Slate; Forbes; MSNBC; Politico; ACSblog; Orin Kerr, Ilya Somin, and David Bernstein of the Volokh Conspiracy; Constitutional Law Prof Blog; Salon; Balkinization; Blog of the Legal Times; and Concurring Opinions.
Several commentators also weighed in on whether the law might survive the rigorous challenge it sustained in the Court today. Eva Rodriguez at the Washington Post’s Post Partisan predicts that the mandate will be upheld, while Charles Lane at the same blog observes that “the five most conservative justices, including swing voter Anthony M. Kennedy, looked like probable votes to stroke down the individual mandate.” Slate, the Wall Street Journal, and Melinda Henneberger of the Washington Post all discuss the mood outside the courthouse. The Atlantic, Mother Jones, Concurring Opinions, and the National Law Journal address the quality of the advocacy, while the Washington Post’s Kathleen Parker discusses the difference between the ACA and the Civil Rights Act. An opinion piece at Slate and the editorial board of the New York Times both urge the preservation of the mandate. Additional commentary is provided by the New Yorker’s Rational Irrationality blog; Balkinization; and Jennifer Hendricks, Nicole Huberfeld, and Scott Moss all at Concurring Opinions.
A condensed version of yesterday’s arguments has been posted at this blog here.
Today the court will hear oral argument on the severability of the individual mandate from the rest of the Affordable Care Act as well as the constitutionality of the expansion of the Medicaid program for the poor. Lyle Denniston of this blog has previewed the former issue here and the latter issue here. Additional coverage comes from Slate, the Washington Post and the Atlantic. The editorial board of the Wall Street Journal argues that “the conditions of new Medicaid conscript the states into involuntary servitude” while the Washington Post’s editorial writes that such challenges to Medicaid’s expansion “fall flat.” Additional commentary comes from Balkinization.
Coverage of Monday’s arguments also continued to roll in. JURIST and Constitutional Law Prof Blog both provide coverage of the arguments regarding the Anti-Injunction Act.
In other Court news, JURIST discusses the Court’s cert. denial in Fields v. Smith, addressing the constitutionality of a Wisconsin law barring prison doctors from providing inmates with hormone treatment or sex reassignment surgery, while the Associated Press (via the Washington Post) covers the Court’s cert. denial in a Nebraska death row case which inspired the film “Boys Don’t Cry.” At this blog Lyle discusses American Tradition Partnership. v. Bullock, a case that might allow the Court to reconsider its decision two years ago in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, while the Volokh Conspiracy addresses the expanded arguments in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum.