We size up three days of historic Supreme Court hearings on the U.S. Constitution and health care.
And so the high court came to the bottom line yesterday in health care reform’s legal debate: Does the federal government have the Constitutional authority to do what Congress voted for in the Obama health care reform?
And the instant analysis on the courthouse steps? No. That in tone and skepticism and body language, the court’s conservative majority was suggesting no. That reading was a long way from a final answer. But it’s all up in the air now.
This hour, On Point: broccoli, cell phones, and health insurance. The Supreme Court at the heart of the health care debate.
Jeffrey Rosen, professor of law at the George Washington University. He’s the author of The Supreme Court: The Personalities and Rivalries that Defined America.
David Cutler, professor of applied economics at Harvard University, one of the architects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act being debated this week in the Supreme Court
From Tom’s Reading List
The New York Times “With the fate of President Obama’s health care law hanging in the balance at the Supreme Court on Tuesday, a lawyer for the administration faced a barrage of skeptical questions from four of the court’s more conservative justices.”
Wall Street Journal “The Supreme Court’s five conservative justices on Tuesday sharply challenged the Obama administration’s arguments for the health-care law, with Justice Anthony Kennedy saying the government has a “very heavy burden of justification” for the measure’s requirement that people carry health insurance or pay a penalty.”
The New Yorker “Across the ideological spectrum, the Justices, through their questions to the lawyers arguing for and against the upholding the A.C.A., declined the invitation for delay. They all (that is, the eight who asked questions; Clarence Thomas did not) seemed to recognize that there were legal and prudential reasons to resolve this issue now.”
Transcript: Oral Arguments Day Two
Here’s the transcript of the second day of Supreme Court oral arguments in the case over the health care reform legislation. You can hear an audio recording of the case here.
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