1% + 27% > 50%

Do you have a prediction for the SCOTUS ruling?

I don’t. But if you believe the Roberts Court operates as the judicial arm of the Republican Party, the ruling may settle one enduring controversy: Is the ACA a sloppy wet kiss to the insurance industry, as the firebaggers claim, or is it a step on the road to universal access?

A Court that serves the party of the 1% can be expected to rule in the best interests of its patrons. But then again, while it’s true that the 1% control the Republican Party, they occasionally have a hard time tamping down the excesses of the crazies they must manipulate to seize and hold power in a democratic republic. Mathematics be damned: Scalia and Thomas may be the Court’s 27%.

In any case, the great TBogg summed up the ultimate outcome nicely:

No matter how the Supreme Court rules today, Ann Romney’s tap-dancing hobby horse will still get better health care than the majority of Americans and Ann will be able to write it off.

Yep. Place your bets, ladies and gents.

[X-posted at Rumproast]

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160 replies
  1. 1
    c u n d gulag says:

    I see one of two decisions.
    1. Defeat of the ACA – by a 5-4, irrational-rational, decision.
    2. Approval – but gutting the mandate, making the act mostly toothless, since it can’t be paid for.
    With Roberts taking over the writing of the decision.

    Either one of those fecks Obama and the Democrats.

    And isn’t that ALL that modern Conservatism is based on?
    “Whatever pisses off the Liberals, Progressives, and Centrist Democrats who represent them?”

    And, if ACA passes, and Roberts writes a narrow decision for it, I’ll look forward to Scalia’s and Alito’s rants in the dissent.

    They may be sh*tty SC Justices, but they write great scaredy-pants Conservative-Cheeto-eatin’-Mountain-Dew-gluggin’-blogger-in-Mama’s-basement opinions.
    And wait for Clarence Thomas to show them where to find the really good p*rn-sites.

  2. 2
    Betty Cracker says:

    @c u n d gulag:

    And isn’t that ALL that modern Conservatism is based on? “Whatever pisses off the Liberals, Progressives, and Centrist Democrats who represent them?”

    That’s certainly what modern conservatism means to the 27%. But the grown-ups in that party, such as they are, are all about the balance sheet.

  3. 3
    Josie says:

    It’s difficult to imagine Roberts wanting to wind up on the same side as Scalia. Roberts may be conservative and in the pockets of the Republicans, but he is not bat-shit crazy. Surely he recognizes the fact that Scalia is off the rails and would not want to be associated with him. If he lines up with Scalia, he will be tarred forever with that decision.

  4. 4
    General Stuck says:

    Already did, or changed it from the mandate getting struck down, to being upheld 6 to 3. Based on flimsy evidence concerning Alito’s and Scalia’s outsized emo raging about losing prior cases on mandatory life sentences for juveniles. And AZ with it’s immigration racial profiling law. I’ve read a couple of places, at least one from a die hard wingnut legal eagle, that made the observation of Scalia getting extra bitchy when cases aren’t going his way, and that his meltdown Monday was an epic one that crossed many lines for assholish Heathering, a true feat for that dickhead. Plus, I don’t think Roberts wants to deal with a flood of winger lawsuits on all kinds of passed laws based on the commerce clause, with conservative sensing blood in the water over a limitation to the commerce clause put forth by the ACA decision. I don’t think perpetual lawsuits challenging beloved programs like SS and medicare would be a net plus for the conservative movement. Those things would be best left to undo legislatively, and a scurrilous bridge too far under Roberts stewardship of the SC. Other than that, I do sense my dog is onboard with the mandate being upheld, but the little rascal could be playing me, sucking up for extra treats. I don’t think the ACA will emerge unscathed however, as there are other areas to hit with wingnut SCOTUS rock.

  5. 5
    JPL says:

    The conservatives on the court have shown no consistency in their rulings. There is no constitutional consistency. The only consistency is pleasing the Koch brothers. Health care is going down, imo.

  6. 6
    Elizabelle says:

    @General Stuck:

    Muy interesting.

    I cannot guess. Just waiting for ten this morning.

    Morning Joe’s cast was salivating, in the 40 seconds they were on my TV today, before I found the remote.

  7. 7
    General Stuck says:

    @c u n d gulag:

    And wait for Clarence Thomas to show them where to find the really good p*rn-sites.

    I can see Thomas being the SC character in The Pelican Brief, haunting DC porn theaters in disguise as a black Gilligan

  8. 8
    J.W. Hamner says:

    I’m going with a 6-3 everything upheld and Scalia authoring another embarrassing wingnut screed in the dissent.

  9. 9
    General Stuck says:

    @Elizabelle:

    Morning Joe’s cast was salivating, in the 40 seconds they were on my TV today, before I found the remote

    I simply cannot watch nor listen to that show on my XM in the morning. If I do venture in, the rest of the day is just shot to hell.

  10. 10
    Wally says:

    An instant classic from Tbogg. Thanks for passing it along.

  11. 11
    c u n d gulag says:

    @Betty Cracker:
    True, very true.

    But don’t slightly higher taxes and a tad more regulations count?

    FSM knows, the grown-up Corporatist ‘balance-sheet’ boys and girls HATE the very thought of them!

  12. 12
    Hal says:

    @General Stuck:

    Based on flimsy evidence concerning Alito’s and Scalia’s outsized emo raging about losing prior cases on mandatory life sentences for juveniles. And AZ with it’s immigration racial profiling law.

    I thought the same thing. It was just odd to me that Scalia would flip out publicly so much when the ACA decision was coming and it was going to be DOOM! for Obama. Flimsy yes, but along with the AZ decision, Roberts and Kennedy seem to have some restraint and at least a fleeting support for Federal powers.

  13. 13
    Ash Can says:

    I’m betting 5-4 or 6-3 upheld because my guess is that Roberts will go with corporations over politics.

  14. 14
    PeakVT says:

    I’m sticking with my prediction of 5-4 to overturn the mandate and the Medicaid expansion (a combo that would cause the maximum damage without pissing of middle-class independent voters), though I’m hoping to be wrong, wrong, wrong. 6-3 is looking more likely than it did before Monday.

  15. 15
    EconWatcher says:

    @Hal:

    My read was that Roberts released the AZ decision first because he wanted to burnish his “reasonable” credentials, right before the big strike down of ACA. But who knows.

  16. 16
    satanicpanic says:

    I’m terrible at predicting these sorts of things, especially with a court that seems to be full of loonies. What I really want to know is, if the ACA gets struck down, what will it mean for the Brocolli mandate?

  17. 17
    Kay says:

    I just wish they’d stop with this cutesy, personality-based analysis:

    Commentators from across the political spectrum have been saying that Justice Scalia, who is the most senior as well as, hands down, the funniest, most acerbic and most politically incorrect of the justices, went too far.

    I mean, come on. Can we have less groveling ass-kissing, please?

    Jeffrey Toobin, who writes about the Supreme Court for The New Yorker, noted in a blog post on Tuesday that the last days of the court’s session “rarely show off the justices to great advantage. Like other mortals, they have put off doing their hardest work, so only the most controversial cases remain.”

    It’s like we spend a good part of every day coddling these wildly powerful, all but untouchable judges. Enough already. Why do they need all this propping up?

  18. 18
    Birthmarker says:

    I personally think it will be upheld though I have a terrible record for prognostications.

    It’s a toughy because on one hand you have 30 million new customers, but on the other hand profits are limited.

    Is there a way to reject just the parts where profits are limited?

  19. 19
    Snarki, child of Loki says:

    betting on upheld, at least for now, so that the ACA remains a potent GOP issue going into November: “the only way we can repeal Obamacare is to win big!”

    With some weasel words inviting later challenges, so that if Romney loses, teabaggers get another shot at invalidating the ACA in court.

    That all assumes that Roberts is a total partisan hack; not a big stretch, I think.

  20. 20
    rikyrah says:

    no bets at al. just bracing myself for the worst

  21. 21
    wobblybits says:

    Being over here in Germany and working on my dissertation, I’ve been able to ignore all the run up to this decision. Keeping my fingers crossed, hoping for the best and whether good news or bad, I’m winding up the evening watching the semi finals with some of the locals.

  22. 22
    RossInDetroit says:

    These tea leaves are too indistinct. Not gonna try to read them. But I think it’s telling that Scalia was super pissy the other day about an issue that really shouldn’t have set him off that much all by itself.

  23. 23
    Birthmarker says:

    @Snarki, child of Loki: But by Fall people will have gotten refunds, and premiums may have dropped. My son’s individual Blue Cross has already reduced premiums. Rebates go out to some in August. A relative’ s meds for a chronic illness have already gone from $90 to $15 per refill.

    Surely at some point ACA will become popular.

  24. 24
    Kay says:

    But today’s decision invalidates the laws of dozens of legislatures and Congress. This court is not easily led to such a result. See, for example, United States v. Harris [citation] (courts must presume an act of Congress is constitutional “unless the lack of constitutional authority… is clearly demonstrated”). Because the court does not rely on the Eight Amendment’s text or or objective evidence of society’s standards, it’s analysis of precedent alone must bear the “heavy burden [that] rests on those who would attack the judgment of the representatives of the people.” Gregg, 428 U.S., at 175. If the court is unwilling to say that precedent compels today’s decision, perhaps it should reconsider that decision.

    Justice Roberts in his dissent on the juvenile sentencing decision.

  25. 25
    General Stuck says:

    @Birthmarker:

    I’m pretty sure if you polled health insurance corp big wigs, they would about all much rather return to the wide open status quo that they had before the ACA. I think they went along with the market based regulatory framework, mostly due to public mood at the time with Obama coming into office, as being ripe for a dem congress passing some kind of reform, and stood down oppo for that reason. Long as dems didn’t do the PO thing, or medicare expansion.

    It’s a toughy because on one hand you have 30 million new customers, but on the other hand profits are limited.

    And I don’t think the industry is at all sure they are going to do very well under the ACA, beyond a chance for that to occur. And nobody else really does either, including the SC,

  26. 26
    Quarks says:

    I can confidently predict that most pundits, and particularly most pundits at the New York Times, will completely misinterpret the Great Meaning of what the decision is.

  27. 27
    Birthmarker says:

    @General Stuck: Good points.

  28. 28
    hildebrand says:

    Two-bits says that they sink the ACA completely. It will be a 5-4 torpedoing – and in the process, someone will pen the opinion that all similar safety-net programs will need to be similarly examined. I think this is the brass-ring for the wingnuts, and they will jump off the horse to get it. (He says, thinking of Opus and mixed metaphors.)

  29. 29
    kd bart says:

    Whatever happens, it’s good news for John McCain.

  30. 30
    PaulW says:

    Bugs Bunny: It’s the suspense that kills me…

  31. 31
    hildebrand says:

    Think of it this way – its a wingnut Christmas kind of day, they get to whack Holder and screw a bunch of people out of health insurance all on the same day. The only thing missing is someone drawing up impeachment papers for Obama.

  32. 32
    El Cid says:

    __

    …the ruling may settle one enduring controversy: Is the ACA a sloppy wet kiss to the insurance industry, as the firebaggers claim, or is it a step on the road to universal access?

    How would the ruling settle this?

    A ruling for or against the ACA could still be said to be either.

    And there’s no theoretical contradiction between seeing as “pro-business” or deciding for the interests of the super-rich whether one were to rule against ACA as an effort to dismantle a reformist & regulated capitalism in the New Deal tradition (i.e., viewing the ACA as part of that and striking it down implicitly and/or explicitly to aid in the breaking down of that reform legacy) or were one to rule that the ACA was Constitutional in general.

    There have been many historical occasions in which the pro-business action favored some businesses over others, or favored the ideological and programmatic interests of anti-reform business organizations over more immediate interests of some or many businesses.

    Many gigantic corporations (and their owners) favored in the 1920s the sorts of reforms which later became the New Deal / FDR agenda, whereas others vehemently opposed them, and often the difference came down to the sort of company economic activity involved — more internationally-oriented production and sales industries favored broader systemic reforms (such as public pensions which became Social Security) whereas more nationally-focused manufacturing and extractive industry opposed the slightest pro-labor or pro-humanity activities. Think Rockefeller vs. National Association of Manufacturers.

    Nearly any of the rulings I’m imagining or have heard realistically suggested count among the ‘pro-business’ decisions.

    And if the ACA is in whole or in part upheld, wouldn’t it be history which determines whether or not the ACA — sloppy wet kiss for Big Insurance or not — is a step on the road to universal coverage? Wouldn’t that be more in the lines of prediction than definition?

  33. 33
    Davis X. Machina says:

    Surely at some point ACA will become popular.

    When it has another name and a Republican Congress passes it, and a Republican President signs it.

    In other words, when it’s an act of legitimate government…

  34. 34
    JPL says:

    @Kay: Roberts is more consistent ideologically, unfortunately.

  35. 35
    EconWatcher says:

    @JPL:

    I think Kay’s point was that, if Roberts is consistent and follows the reasoning of his dissent in the juvenile sentencing case, he will vote to uphold ACA. It’s an act of the people’s representatives. Nothing in the Commerce Clause makes the distiction between activity and inactivity pushed by the challengers, so the challenge does not rest on text. So the law should be upheld. (I think it will be struck down, though.)

  36. 36
    beltane says:

    @hildebrand: I tend to agree with your prediction. If one of the chants of the Iranian Revolution was “Death to America!”, the main rallying cry of the Republican Revolution can be summed up as “Death to Americans!”

  37. 37
    NonyNony says:

    @c u n d gulag:

    1. Defeat of the ACA – by a 5-4, irrational-rational, decision.
    2. Approval – but gutting the mandate, making the act mostly toothless, since it can’t be paid for.
    With Roberts taking over the writing of the decision.

    I see 1. as possible but 2. as a complete impossibility. There is no way that Roberts is going to sign on to a majority decision that upholds everything except the mandate, or even a partial upholding of insurance company restrictions without the mandate. His record so far suggests that he’s more of a corporate man than a fire-breathing ideologue and I don’t see him as willing to destroy the health insurance industry just to snag a tiny bit of rollback on the Commerce Clause.

    So IMNSHO (of course IANAL so YMMV) the three choices are:

    1. Kennedy is on board with destroying the entire PPACA (probably in a very narrowly written majority opinion that doesn’t touch the bits of Commerce clause precedence that Kennedy likes but specifically targets the political compromises made to craft the PPACA) leading to a 5-4 strike down decision

    OR

    2. Kennedy is unconvinced and votes to essentially uphold the whole thing and Roberts joins in to write a tightly controlled majority opinion making new precedent as thin as possible leading to a 6-3 uphold decision.

    OR (and this is the least likely possibility)

    3. Kennedy is on board for striking down the mandate (because he doesn’t like the idea of a tax penalty but would be fine with a tax credit because shut up that’s why) but thinks the rest of it is just peachy as far as the Interstate Commerce clause is concerned. Which would lead to Roberts switching sides in order to uphold the mandate so as not to bankrupt the insurance industry. Leading to a 5-4 vote to uphold the law (the only way I see a 5-4 decision to uphold coming out of this).

    3. is incredibly unlikely, of course. But I just can’t believe that Roberts would be willing to trash the health insurance industry in exchange for what is basically a very minor argument over semantics when it comes to the Commerce clause. Which is what the ‘mandate’ argument comes down to – because if it were Congress giving people a tax credit to buy health insurance then the argument would have been laughed out of Court years ago. But since it’s phrased as a tax penalty if they don’t buy health insurance instead, it becomes a question of whether those semantics matter. A victory over the mandate language alone nets Roberts next to nothing – and whatever minor gains it might put into place pale in comparison to the damage that would be done to the health insurance industry. So I just don’t see him going for it.

  38. 38
    John S. says:

    John Roberts only calls balls and strikes, just like a good umpire should.

    Too bad the game he’s officiating is football.

  39. 39
    chopper says:

    No matter how the Supreme Court rules today, Ann Romney’s tap-dancing hobby horse will still get better health care than the majority of Americans and Ann will be able to write it off.

    oh tbogg, you’re a national treasure.

  40. 40
    Nicole says:

    Tbogg, and the rest of us, should drop the $77,000 write-off thing, as it’s not correct:

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/mon.....falca.html

    In fact, the Romney’s took only a $50 deduction for their mare’s expenses. They declared a $77,000 loss, but it can’t be deducted against anything other than income the mare brings in, which, in dressage, is not all that likely.

    This doesn’t make me dislike the Romneys any less (not only does the horse still get better care than millions of Americans, I imagine their goddamn cars do, too); it’s just that the $77,000 write-off story is incorrect and we shouldn’t keep beating it. We’re liberals; we’re better than the other side.

  41. 41
    Kay says:

    @JPL:

    As opposed to legally, gotcha :)

  42. 42
    geg6 says:

    @Josie:

    Roberts may be conservative and in the pockets of the Republicans, but he is not bat-shit crazy. Surely he recognizes the fact that Scalia is off the rails and would not want to be associated with him. If he lines up with Scalia, he will be tarred forever with that decision.

    This assumes facts for which I have yet to see any evidence. Either that Roberts is, somehow, not batshit crazy or that he will be tarred forever by cozying up to the crazy, at least by anyone that matters. And the very definition of people who don’t matter includes every constitutional scholar in America. The only people that matter are the Village and the Street. If JPMorgan and Brian Williams are happy, that’s all that matters.

  43. 43
    El Cid says:

    Republicans are horrified at the broad powers the federal gubmit has seized based upon the Commerce Clause, but whenever they control the Supreme Court, they’re pretty okay with judicial review, which is not in the Constitution, unlike the Commerce Clause, and exists because the Court itself declared that it had that power.

    It’s a funny notion of originalism or strict constructionism which gets all het’up about a clause being too broadly interpreted for federal power, but an unelected, unchallengeable branch of government capable of single-handedly (as an office) deciding how a nation may or may not govern itself based upon it granting itself that authority — well, that they’re okay with.

  44. 44
    Steeplejack says:

    A little something to get the blood boiling in anticipation of the Supreme Court decision:

    I just saw this awful anti-ACA ad again, this time in ESPN’s Wimbledon coverage. I first saw it a couple of nights ago in the middle of an Angels-Orioles baseball game. It is from the Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee (CWALAC). Unbelievable.

    Concerned Woman for America is, of course, a wingnut outfit (from their site: “the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization with a rich 30-year history of helping our members across the country bring Biblical principles into all levels of public policy”). I guess I’m a little amazed that they have enough money to drop this ad into big TV spots, and/or that they think sports programs are a good fit. (I can maybe see Wimbledon, but MLB?)

    I went to the Facebook page for Dr. Ami Siems, the doctor in the ad, and she is taking a lot of (justified) heat over it.

  45. 45
    Dan says:

    I think we se a 6-3 vote to uphold the ACA. Though nothing would surprise me at this point.

  46. 46
    Steve says:

    I like to see we are still open to the possibility that the ACA is a huge corporate giveaway, because we wouldn’t want it to look like progressives have a brain or anything.

  47. 47
    chopper says:

    expect the best, accept the worst. i’m hoping 6-3 uphold, but i’m worried 5-4 against the mandate.

  48. 48
    EconWatcher says:

    @El Cid:

    Marbury v. Madison wrongly decided? Dude, that’s off the wall. If Congress could decide for itself whether its laws are constitutional, the Constitution would be a dead letter. Judicial review, like separation of powers itself, is implicit in the structure.

  49. 49
    GregB says:

    By the way, what is happening to Eric Holder is a high tech lynching.

  50. 50
    JPL says:

    @Kay: Yup. Although by the reasoning, you cited he should uphold ACA but I’m still not sure he doesn’t come up with the reasoning afterwards. I think his ideology rules all. If per chance Kennedy votes for ACA, I can imagine a scenario where Roberts wants to join also but that has more to do with his role as chief justice.

  51. 51
    negative 1 says:

    @General Stuck: I don’t necessarily agree that insurance companies want to go back to the wide open status quo, because I’m not sure they ever had it. There are state insurance regulatory commissions, and yes they are completely in the pocket of insurers but they at least have to put up a facade. Lest we forget, the ACA was dead and buried until a California insurer requested a 30% hike from their state’s insurance board. It’s not totally wide open, and by now insurers can see profits from signing up young mostly healthy people (remember pre-existing condition exclusions are probably a thing of the past no matter what happens today).
    On a different comment of yours, I wondered about the spill-over effect on Medicare and Social Security too. Are you a lawyer or are there any who can explain the potential effects on those two programs?

  52. 52
    Chris says:

    @El Cid:

    Many gigantic corporations (and their owners) favored in the 1920s the sorts of reforms which later became the New Deal / FDR agenda, whereas others vehemently opposed them, and often the difference came down to the sort of company economic activity involved—more internationally-oriented production and sales industries favored broader systemic reforms (such as public pensions which became Social Security) whereas more nationally-focused manufacturing and extractive industry opposed the slightest pro-labor or pro-humanity activities. Think Rockefeller vs. National Association of Manufacturers.

    Interesting. Why did the internationally-oriented ones prefer the New Deal and the national ones not?

    I knew about some of the divides, like Northern businesses favoring regulation because it prevented Southern businesses from undercutting them with low wages and crappy worker protection. I just hadn’t heard that specific one before.

  53. 53
    Betty Cracker says:

    @El Cid: You’re right.

  54. 54
    Montysano says:

    @General Stuck:

    Plus, I don’t think Roberts wants to deal with a flood of winger lawsuits on all kinds of passed laws based on the commerce clause, with conservative sensing blood in the water over a limitation to the commerce clause put forth by the ACA decision.

    Former Solicitor General Walter Dellinger was on Lawrence OD’s show last night, and this was precisely his take: if the mandate is found to be an unconstitutional use of the commerce clause, what other settled law would that unwind?

  55. 55
    General Stuck says:

    @negative 1:

    LOL, so you are saying that insurance companies prefer to have their profits capped at 15 percent? You should have stopped with the states being in the pockets of state regulators. That is the whole point of federal intervention. To not only set national standards, but also to have a big stick to whip the rampant self interest and often corrupt politicking at the state level.

  56. 56
    Ash Can says:

    @Steve: I’ll be happy to clarify my own remark — I’m betting that Roberts sees the loss of ACA as translating into lost revenue for the insurance companies, enough to more than make up for the profit cap, and will deem that unacceptable. From my own standpoint, I see the ACA, warts and all, as light years ahead of what we had prior to its passage, which was somewhere between jack and shit.

  57. 57
    El Cid says:

    @EconWatcher: No, it isn’t, and many of the very authors of the Constitution vehemently disagreed.

    The idea wasn’t that “Congress” would just decide — it was implicit in the structure of elected government that the nation’s people not only would decide but had to decide.

    There is simply no view of “democratic” governance which can encompass the notion of a higher, completely unaccountable authority able to rule at any time what laws are and aren’t permissible. And the barrier for countering such powers — passing Constitutional Amendments — is extremely high in practice.

    It’s the sort of thing that when by choice such a court acts as responsibly as possible has all sorts of beneficial and deeply pro-democratic effects; and it is also the sort of thing that can so easily have one particular court flush an entire model of democratic governance down the drain.

    To a degree, any democratic governance model will be vulnerable to the ‘bad faith’ possibility: almost any system can be made tyrannical by actors and patterns of actions to undermine any democratic accountability.

    It’s primarily luck that the judicial review powers acceded to the Sup Ct have been reasonable ‘enough’ to not completely destroy the system.

    Of course, “destroy” means different things to different people — conservatives generally view things like “Brown” or “Roe” as indicating the destruction of America by tyrannical judicial review.

    It’s certainly the system we have, but at any time, you have to just keep your fingers crossed.

  58. 58
    MeDrewNotYou says:

    I just saw Tejinder on Scotusblog say that they think the health care decision was authored by Roberts and would be read last. (They go by reverse seniority and the Chief Justice is automatically the senior-most.) If that’s the case, I’m optimistic that he upheld and is trying to make things as narrow as possible to avoid the ACA being used as precedent.

    Of course it could also mean they’re killing it and he’s writing the opinion because Scalia, Thomas, and Alito can’t be counted on not to taunt Dems and make asses of themselves.

  59. 59
    El Cid says:

    @Chris: Here is a good review of one type of this debate, by our nation’s best sociologist of U.S. power and upper-class dominance, G. William Domhoff. It examines the role of corporate leaders, owners, and their proxies in actually helping design and support what became known as “Social Security”.

  60. 60
    handsmile says:

    Remember, this could be the day that burnspbesq, Omnes Omnibus, and eemom get to be crowned Kings and Queen of the Day (why, even the month!) here if their long-held predictions that the ACA will be upheld prove to be true.

    And are we prepared for that? (Their reign could be severe.) I sure as hell am.

  61. 61
    shortstop says:

    I’m not going to make a prediction on what the court will do today.

    But a request for you, Betty: a day or two before the election, take reader predictions on electoral vote breakdowns. I RULED in 2008, getting every single state right, but was two points off because I forgot about Omaha and the split vote in Nebraska. I want to see if I can duplicate that this year.

  62. 62
    JMG says:

    Whole thing struck down 5-4. Just a guess.

  63. 63
    General Stuck says:

    @negative 1:

    Are you a lawyer or are there any who can explain the potential effects on those two programs?

    I’m a fake lawyer on the internet. It doesn’t pay well, or at all, but is loads of fun. It should be obvious that striking down the mandate via the commerce clause would provide for the first time, a limit on congress for using it to establish national regulations. And that there are plenty of real lawyers and pols out there, from the right wing, mostly, that will test the new paradime to probe the SCOTUS wire for application to their pet peeve law passed under the commerce clause. No brainer. Putting Roberts under the gun to parse and limit, or not, these cases. I can’t see the supreme court invalidating SS at this time. I do see the GOP corrupting it, mostly by privatizing it, and other schemes. But through the legislature, not the courts. I am one that believes right now, what is motivating movement conservative, and at least a couple of them on the SC, is not so much promoting corporatism, but rather trying to maintain the GOP as electorally viable into the future, for several reasons. Under the general rubric of, you can’t do shit if you can’t win elections. See CU, and maybe the VRA when it arrives on their doorstep.

  64. 64
    schrodinger's cat says:

    I am not a lawyer and have zero insight into the thinking of the Supreme Court. I however will wait to go into a full panic mode until after the decision has been handed, rather than make myself crazy speculating about something that I don’t know enough about.

  65. 65
    shortstop says:

    @handsmile: I’ll take the welfare of more than 300 million over the fleeting chagrin of a couple of goofballs with personality disorders. (It’s not like being wrong ever shuts them up, anyway.)

  66. 66
    zzyzx says:

    I’m feeling optimistic for some reason this morning. 6-3 upheld.

  67. 67
    Culture of Truth says:

    I think they will strike the mandate, leave the rest.

    Scalia will write and read a concurring opinion arguing the whole law must be struck, while 4 dissenters would have upheld it all. Ergo a cobbled coalition with JR, Alito, Scalia, Thomas & Kennedy. This way JR gets to make his mark, strike down an unpopular provision, while not gutting the whole thing.

    Scotusblog says its highly likely this was written by JR, so probably not a screed, but he’s not a moderate either.

  68. 68
    Maude says:

    Rightie radio is all aflutter about the ACA being demolished and Holder being held in contempt. Bastids don’t care about anyone going without basic needs.
    I can’t say more, I feel the rant welling up.
    Romney is enjoying himself because he thinks he’s making political points.

  69. 69
    SRW1 says:

    I suspect Roberts goes with his insurance buddies and writes a narrow ruling to uphold the mandate. In addition, the court defines the ‘broccoli rule’ to limit Congress’ power via the commerce clause. Scalia supports the latter, but thunders an almighty dissent on the main ruling that culminates in him declaring Obama the anti-Christ. At that point the ground below him opens up and Scalia goes straight to hell.

  70. 70
    negative 1 says:

    @General Stuck: No I’m saying that in many states regardless of this decision they will still be capped at 15%, it’s just that this will be 15% of a larger number. I think this because it was true before anyone said “ACA”.
    Where they made the most money was on denying pre-existing conditions, then arguing that every condition was pre-existing. My understanding was that unless they can invalidate the whole thing, which was a far less likely scenario, that the pre-existing condition exclusion was going to stay banned. Is this your understanding too?

  71. 71
    General Stuck says:

    @negative 1:

    Are you a lawyer or are there any who can explain the potential effects on those two programs?

    I’m a fake lawyer on the internet. It doesn’t pay well, or at all, but is loads of fun. It should be obvious that striking down the mandate via the commerce clause would provide for the first time, a limit on congress for using it to establish national regulations and policy. And that there are plenty of real lawyers and pols out there, from the right wing, mostly, that will test the new paradime to probe the SCOTUS wire for application to their pet peeve law passed under the commerce clause. No brainer.

  72. 72
    Alex S. says:

    My opinion is unchanged, upheld by 6-3. Roberts sides with corporations, i.e. the financial corporations that would be fucked without a mandate.

  73. 73
    shortstop says:

    @SRW1: Doesn’t the Metro run right under the Supreme Court building? I hope he doesn’t take any innocent commuters with him.

  74. 74
    PeakVT says:

    I wonder if the Dow will respond to the ruling at all.

  75. 75
    kwAwk says:

    Is it just me or shouldn’t the Supreme Court be giving lessons on how to keep secrets to the other branches of government?

    I haven’t heard diddley squat in terms of rumors and leaks from them.

  76. 76
    liberal says:

    @El Cid:
    Agreed—I think the frontpager’s assertion is wrong.

    Many gigantic corporations (and their owners) favored in the 1920s the sorts of reforms which later became the New Deal / FDR agenda, whereas others vehemently opposed them, and often the difference came down to the sort of company economic activity involved—more internationally-oriented production and sales industries favored broader systemic reforms (such as public pensions which became Social Security) whereas more nationally-focused manufacturing and extractive industry opposed the slightest pro-labor or pro-humanity activities. Think Rockefeller vs. National Association of Manufacturers.

    Thomas Ferguson wrote an amazing book called Golden Rule: The Investment Theory of Politics. IIRC, he claims that businesses that opposed the New Deal were labor-intensive ones, since their primary input would become more costly. The capital-intensive ones favored it. My recollection was that they favored it not because it in itself was better for them, but because they were granted their support in exchange for “access to the levers of the State.”

    Having read that book, my thesis is that small businesses tend to be so reactionary because most of them are very labor intensive.

  77. 77
    Betty Cracker says:

    @shortstop: Sounds like a great idea. I suck at predictions, but it’ll be fascinating to hear various opinions on it and see who’s right.

  78. 78
    Scott S. says:

    Evil always wins, good always loses. 5-4 to overturn.

    If the Repubs are really feeling their oats, they’ll also decide to overturn Medicare, Medicaid, welfare, food stamps, and Social Security.

    Wouldn’t be surprised to hear Scalia go full birther, either.

  79. 79
    liberal says:

    @NonyNony:
    Very interesting analysis.

    But, while not rising to the level of a flaw in your argument, note that someone on the Court might assume that while removing the mandate would indeed estroy the private insurance market, the pressure on Congress to fix the resulting mess would be overwhelming.

  80. 80
    shortstop says:

    @Betty Cracker: It’s just fun for geeks, and doesn’t the world need a little bit more of that?

  81. 81
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    No matter the decision, the Republicans will declare victory and it will be seen as good news for Rmoney. Reality has nothing to do with how it will be reported, whatever the decision.

    The Presstitutes will get their happy ending, no matter the result.

  82. 82
    Amir Khalid says:

    We’re going to find out very very soon now. No idea how your SCOTUS will decide, any more than you guys, but I’m certain that the contrast in reactions between the Romney campaign and Obama’s — sorry, the White House — will be interesting.

  83. 83
    burnspbesq says:

    One potential omen: the Arizona opinions were a useful reminder that what happens in oral argument is a notoriously bad predictor of outcomes.

  84. 84
    PeakVT says:

    @kwAwk: It’s a lot easier to keep a secret if you don’t have a lot of them and few people know them. People have brought up the first point for decades wrt. the defense establishment, but it’s never been taken to heart.

  85. 85
    Ash Can says:

    One thing I do know is that if the ACA is upheld, Scalia’s dissent — should he be the one to read the opposing opinion — will be a thing of beauty. It could be enough to make the ghost of David Broder weep.

  86. 86
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @kwAwk:
    #1 — Clerks sign blood-oaths, and this in an oath-bound business.
    #2 — Who’s going to piss away a lucrative career in a profession where attorney-client privilege is a palladium — clerking at SCOTUS is the resumé ornament — by being identified as ‘The Leaker’?
    # 3 — How do you monetize the leaks?

    After Lazarus’ book Closed Chambers came out, the oaths and such were redoubled.

  87. 87
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    http://www.balloon-juice.com/2.....nt-2407146

    Lordy, what the hell was I thinking re: Alito?

  88. 88
    shortstop says:

    @Ash Can: If only someone would sell it on DVD/blu-ray in a special commemorative edition. They could pair it with a Franklin Mint plate with handpainted flying spittle and loving attention to getting the scarlet of the face just right.

  89. 89
    General Stuck says:

    @negative 1:

    There is essentially no regulation anywhere but maybe a few states, where insurance companies are unrestrained from doing whatever they want, whenever they want. They roll over state laws whenever they please, usually with a wink and nod from state regulators. With the only recourse for those citizens done wrong, is going to court against an army of corp lawyers. Sometimes they get some justice, but mostly not. I did used to be a federal regulator that worked closely with gov lawyers to enforce an environmental law, and I can tell you with a high degree of confidence that any industry, or state, would rather not have the feds involved, the same way they recoil from Herpes. The reason is that short of meta political interference along the margins, the federal bureaucracy is a kind of Godzilla, that just marches on following laws and regs, and never ever forgets when you run afoul of them. And there are many other regs in the ACA, other than the profit cap.

  90. 90
    shortstop says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: You were young and idealistic. It was a simpler time.

  91. 91
    Patricia Kayden says:

    0% chance that the mandate is upheld, but 100% chance that the rest of the ACA will be deemed okay.

  92. 92
    dmsilev says:

    SCOTUSBlog’s live coverage

    T minus 10 minutes and counting…

  93. 93
    burnspbesq says:

    @handsmile:

    Remember, this could be the day that burnspbesq, Omnes Omnibus, and eemom get to be crowned Kings and Queen of the Day (why, even the month!) here if their long-held predictions that the ACA will be upheld prove to be true.

    The only people who have anything to fear during my reign are Yankee fans. From Steve Gilliards Heavenly lips to my ear.

  94. 94
    Rosalita says:

    I know for sure Scalia is nursing the mother of all hard-on’s because he knows everyone is hanging on this decision.

  95. 95
    Gary says:

    Although I really believe it’s 50-50, and there’s no reasonable way to predict, I’ll go out on a limb and predict the mandate is upheld 6-3.

    I think (actually, it’s more like hope) that while Kennedy is enough of a hack to jettison his principles to elect a Republican president, he won’t cross that line when the issue is not a purely partisan one. And if Kennedy votes to uphold the mandate, so will Roberts so that he can write the opinion.

  96. 96
    shortstop says:

    @dmsilev: More like 25…they have a couple of decisions that will come first.

  97. 97
    burnspbesq says:

    Don’t forget that there are five other decisions coming down this morning. It wouldn’t surprise me to see the healthcare cases announced last.

  98. 98
    liberal says:

    @El Cid:

    There is simply no view of “democratic” governance which can encompass the notion of a higher, completely unaccountable authority able to rule at any time what laws are and aren’t permissible. And the barrier for countering such powers—passing Constitutional Amendments—is extremely high in practice.

    With all due respect, I don’t think it’s that clear.

    First, AFAICT modern democracy theorists always leave room for certain rights that can’t be trumped by majority rule. W/o those rights, you don’t have democracy in the modern sense—you have mob rule.

    Second, you don’t have to pass a Con. amendment. You can just impeach members of the USSC and replace them. I don’t see any strong evidence that the impeachment process can’t be used for “political crimes” (as opposed to statutory crimes or ethical lapses). That goes ditto for the president. Bush 43 should have been impeached for the Iraq invasion, even if it wasn’t a statutory crime, because it was as massive political one. (Yes, I know, it wasn’t worth impeaching him insofar as the Senate wouldn’t have convicted, though I’d argue it was worth it insofar as what the subpoena power would have drug up.)

    Along those lines, every member of the 5-4 majority in the Bush v Gore case should have been impeached and removed. Yeah, yeah, I know, it wouldn’t have happened, but the claim that it’d be “wrong” is IMHO farcical.

  99. 99
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @shortstop: Was prolly listening to Boz Scaggs at the time.

  100. 100
    4tehlulz says:

    Fuck it: 6-3 to uphold the mandate, with the opinion carving out an exception to allow it because we participate in the health care system at some point in our lives.

  101. 101
    shortstop says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: Thanks for the earworm, buddy.

  102. 102
    Valdivia says:

    is it too early to have a drink? technically I never got to sleep since last night so I think maybe that makes it ok.

  103. 103
    Steeplejack says:

    @shortstop:

    We brushed our teeth with baking soda.

  104. 104
    NonyNony says:

    @Ash Can:

    One thing I do know is that if the ACA is upheld, Scalia’s dissent—should he be the one to read the opposing opinion—will be a thing of beauty. It could be enough to make the ghost of David Broder weep.

    If the mandate is upheld 6-3 I’m going to expect no less than 2 separate documents coming out of the minority, and possibly even one for each of them.

  105. 105
    shortstop says:

    @Steeplejack: Movies cost two dolla. We rode our bikes all over town without helmets.

  106. 106
    Wag says:

    OT, but here’s a great take on Rommney from the NYT today

    Romney’s sole line of attack is a promise constructed of vapors and held together by wishes: He led a company that dramatically increased his wealth, so he can lead a country and nominally increase ours.

    Sums thing up perfectly

  107. 107
    Steeplejack says:

    What TV channel should I be watching to get the best coverage?

  108. 108
    Chris says:

    @liberal:

    Having read that book, my thesis is that small businesses tend to be so reactionary because most of them are very labor intensive.

    Interesting explanation.

    I’ve met several small or medium sized business guys and there seems to be a trend among some of them where they wish they were Rockefellers, are acutely aware that they’re not, realize on some level that they’re never going to be and take out their frustrations on their employees. Always thought that was one of the bigger factors in why they turned out conservative. Your explanation makes much more sense, though.

  109. 109
    Steeplejack says:

    @shortstop:

    We rode our bikes all over town without helmets.

    And without child molesters.

  110. 110
    Xenos says:

    @handsmile:

    Remember, this could be the day that burnspbesq, Omnes Omnibus, and eemom get to be crowned Kings and Queen of the Day (why, even the month!) here if their long-held predictions that the ACA will be upheld prove to be true.

    Predicting this is really a no-lose proposition.

    Existing law, at this moment, very clearly shows the mandate to be constitutional. So any competent lawyer will predict it to be upheld.

    And if the court decides to change the meaning of the constitution so as to overturn this law, who could have predicted that? It is certainly not malpractice to have reality changed on you like this.

    After a few weeks being convinced that a 5-4 decision would toss out the entire law, I am getting more optimistic due to the report that Roberts is writing the decision. Changing the interpretation of the commerce clause in order to invalidate a law is like setting off an earthquake to knock down a single house. The wreckage would be far and wide, and highly unpredictable. I suspect (hope) Roberts would not allow it.

  111. 111
    gbear says:

    The only prediction that I am willing to make today is that we will see a week-long peak of Obama Derangement Syndrome starting the moment the decision comes down.

  112. 112
    Steeplejack says:

    @shortstop:

    Also, I’ll get back to you in an open thread about wristwatch stuff. I am your go-to watch guy.

  113. 113
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    @shortstop: I’m here for ya.

  114. 114
    Strandedvandal says:

    I’m saying 7-2 upheld. Why? Because as far as I can tell, no one else has predicted it. Seems to be just as valid as trying to understand what these freaks are thinking.

  115. 115
    shortstop says:

    @gbear: You so right.

  116. 116
    Schlemizel says:

    At first I had a hard time guessing which way the 5 pygmies would fall on this. On one hand throwing it out would be a huge win for the GOP. But on the other hand keeping it is a huge windfall for the insurance companies.

    But I have said here several times I think the allow the law to stand but kill the mandate. This is good for the GOP as they can still run against ACA & that evil socialist Obama while the insurance companies are free to jack rates up sky high to cover for the healthy people not buying in. This becomes an even bigger win for the GOP as it will “prove” that govt. intervention is always expensive.

  117. 117
    ericblair says:

    @Valdivia:

    s it too early to have a drink? technically I never got to sleep since last night so I think maybe that makes it ok.

    It’s after 5pm in most of Asia, so think of Yokohama or Ulan Baator and go right ahead.

    Me, 6-3 uphold and the paramedics on standby with tranqs for Scalia.

  118. 118

    I think it possible that the Court is going to rule beyond the ACA. Perhaps they will take positions that affect Medicare or Medicaid, or perhaps they will restrict the Commerce Clause in some way.

    “Keep your government out of my Medicare!”

  119. 119
    burnspbesq says:

    Scotusblog says there are 344,000 people logged into its live blog.

  120. 120
    Schlemizel says:

    BTW – I believe a justice or two has recused themselves on ACA so the call will not be 7-2 or 6-3 or 5-4.

    Of course those would be the liberal members – Uncle justice Thomas whos wife is a lobbyist for interests in ACA and who had a substantial part of the family income from same did not feel his opinion could be swayed so he stayed in.

  121. 121
    shortstop says:

    @Steeplejack: @Just Some Fuckhead: I feel as supported as any girl could ever be. Thanks, fellas.

  122. 122
    dmsilev says:

    @ericblair:

    Me, 6-3 uphold and the paramedics on standby with tranqs for Scalia.

    I’ll agree with this. Except that they’ll probably have some big game hunter with a trank gun.

  123. 123
    Scott S. says:

    @gbear: There’s no peak in ODS. It always increases. But it’ll get louder and crazier for a while. It’ll also get louder and crazier after the election, and steadily increase, at least until the next Tim McVeigh blows up a building, after which most of the crazies will realize how badly they’ll do in prison and slink away.

  124. 124
    shortstop says:

    @Raven on the Hill: The third baseman said this morning that “Government, stay out of my Medicare!” would appear in Scalia’s dissent. I wish I could say this was an outlandish prediction.

  125. 125
    burnspbesq says:

    The first decision of the day, Alvarez, affirms the Ninth Circuit on a First Amendment issue. Scalia, Thomas, and Alito dissent. Anyone remember what this case is about?

  126. 126
    p.a. says:

    @Josie:

    It’s difficult to imagine Roberts wanting to wind up on the same side as Scalia. Roberts may be conservative and in the pockets of the Republicans, but he is not bat-shit crazy. Surely he recognizes the fact that Scalia is off the rails and would not want to be associated with him. If he lines up with Scalia, he will be tarred forever with that decision.

    and a pony! c’mon. as I’ve said previously ad nauseam, this is the types of cases these scumbags have almost literally been bred for. The easiest way for the RobScAliThomas bloc to kill the whole law is to kill the mandate- nondeniability without a mandate is a death sentence for insurers, unless they skyrocket their premiums. Then the Retaliban party hacks can come out and say, “You see the results of ‘scoccializzed’ medicine!’ And anyone who points out the facts of the matter can look forward to the MSM’s “Some people say… but on the other hand…” stories.

    My prediction (burying the lead): she’s a goner.

  127. 127
    shortstop says:

    @dmsilev: Heh.

  128. 128
    shortstop says:

    @burnspbesq: Whether the First Amendment allows people to lie with impunity about having gotten military honors.

  129. 129
    Dan says:

    @burnspbesq: Made it illegal to lie about military service (“Stolen Valor Act”)

  130. 130
    burnspbesq says:

    Here we go …

  131. 131
    Steeplejack says:

    CNN reporting individual mandate struck down.

  132. 132
    Culture of Truth says:

    OBAMACARE UPHELD

  133. 133
    MeDrewNotYou says:

    Mandate survives as a tax!!!

  134. 134
    4tehlulz says:

    MANDATE SURVIVES

  135. 135
    Schlemizel says:

    @burnspbesq: the “Stolen Valor act – can’t lie about earning military medals – I don’t however remember which way the district ruled

  136. 136
    burnspbesq says:

    The individual mandate survives as a tax.

  137. 137
    4tehlulz says:

    @Steeplejack: SCCOTUSBlog > CNN

  138. 138
    Schlemizel says:

    @burnspbesq: the “Stolen Valor act – can’t lie about earning military medals – I don’t however remember which way the district ruled

  139. 139
    MeDrewNotYou says:

    Mandate survives as a tax!!!

  140. 140
    joes527 says:

    I love the intertubes. In order to not miss deadline by 4.3 picoseconds news organizations just post any ol’ shit and let god sort it out

  141. 141
    Xenos says:

    AP, per CNBC, says mandate upheld as a tax.

    Meanwhile, internet crashes

  142. 142
    burnspbesq says:

    Amy Howe: Medicaid provision “limited but not invalidated” whatever that turns out to mean.

  143. 143
    shortstop says:

    Medicaid provision limited but upheld

  144. 144
    Steeplejack says:

    @4tehlulz:

    LOL. Wolf Blitzer and crew still bloviating at 10:11 about “struck down,” although Wolf occasionally inserts a “We’re looking for more information.”

  145. 145
    4tehlulz says:

    I wonder if Mitt is going to sleep well tonight.

  146. 146
    joes527 says:

    Am I correct that the gestalt of this session is that Scalia go spanked?

    So while our courts may do stupid and partisan things (I’m looking at you, CU) it isn’t totally corrupt.

  147. 147
    gbear says:

    Obama Derangement Syndrome!
    Obama Derangement Syndrome!
    Obama Derangement Syndrome!
    Obama Derangement Syndrome!
    Obama Derangement Syndrome!

    This is going to make the Holder vote today look really petty and lame.

  148. 148
    Schlemizel says:

    Mark me down as stunned if the mandate stays – could some of the 5 pygmies actually have a soul and some sense of “good of the country” instead of Elephant uber alles

  149. 149
    scav says:

    Just up and waiting for coffee, but there as least some shiney Schaden in Lord Murdoch and some Mixed Schaden at Lord Murdoch being upstaged. Still in the details (see lack of caffeine above) but not much unexpected, other than his Mordoid not being at the overt helm of the PaperStar, but all the shrieks of “It had NOTHING to do with the Paper That Shall Not Be Named and Never Existed!” is sill a mild joy.

  150. 150
    the Conster says:

    CJ Roberts was 5th vote. I’ll be dipped in shit.

  151. 151
    Ash Can says:

    Sounds like CNN got caught with their pants down.

  152. 152
    Schlemizel says:

    On “Stolen Valor” court has ruled lying is free speech and Congress can’t outlaw it – but there appears to be a caveat that with some guidance about how Congress could redraft the bill to meet the courts approval

    will need to see more

  153. 153
    feebog says:

    Looks like a big V for team Obama. Hope Scalia is so pissed he resigns. Do it Tony!

  154. 154
    Chris says:

    Since the next thread simply won’t load, I’ll just remain here to say: good work, Supreme Court! And as for all the conservatards who’ve been gloating for days that Obama was about to become a lame duck, I have only this to say: http://3weirdsisters.com/2010/.....t-comment/

  155. 155
    Joel says:

    I always thought I was cynical…

  156. 156

    @Raven on the Hill:

    I think it possible that the Court is going to rule beyond the ACA. Perhaps they will take positions that affect Medicare or Medicaid, or perhaps they will restrict the Commerce Clause in some way.

    Croak! Croakcroakcroak!

    Called that one. They did blow away the enforcement of the Medicaid expansion in the ACA, and they did it by weakening the Commerce Clause.

    I guess they didn’t touch Medicare because it is too popular.

    The other thing that strikes me, is that like most of the major decisions of the Roberts Court, is that this decision is a mess. We have no idea how the Court is going to rule on future social welfare programs, now that the Commerce Clause has been held as not applying to this one. I gather the Courts conservatives rendered a bithering, blistering disaster of a dissent. I haven’t seen much reporting of it yet, but I suspect some of the ideas expressed in it are going to figure in future conservative decisions.

    Meantime let us take note that for Roberts, the wealth of the 1% trumps conservative ideology, but for the rest of the Court’s conservatives it is the other way.

  157. 157

    @Raven on the Hill:

    I think it possible that the Court is going to rule beyond the ACA. Perhaps they will take positions that affect Medicare or Medicaid, or perhaps they will restrict the Commerce Clause in some way.

    Croak! Croakcroakcroak!

    Called that one. They did blow away the enforcement of the Medicaid expansion in the ACA, and they did it by weakening the Commerce Clause.

    I guess they didn’t touch Medicare because it is too popular.

    The other thing that strikes me, is that like most of the major decisions of the Roberts Court, is that this decision is a mess. We have no idea how the Court is going to rule on future social welfare programs, now that the Commerce Clause has been held as not applying to this one. I gather the Court’s conservatives rendered a blithering, blistering disaster of a dissent. I haven’t seen much reporting of it yet, but I suspect some of the ideas expressed in it are going to figure in future conservative decisions.

    Meantime let us take note that for Roberts, the wealth of the 1% trumps conservative ideology, but for the rest of the Court’s conservatives it is the other way.

  158. 158
    Brachiator says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    No matter how the Supreme Court rules today, Ann Romney’s tap-dancing hobby horse will still get better health care than the majority of Americans and Ann will be able to write it off.

    Not exactly. Romney isn’t able to directly write off these expenses, but nuance is hard.

    That said, today’s Supreme Court ruling is a dressage step in the right direction.

  159. 159
    MomSense says:

    @Betty Cracker
    “Insurers such as Wellpoint and Cigna (down 4% and 5% respectively) are dropping because the law is likely to crimp their profit margins.”

    From Forbes.

  160. 160
    Joe Buck says:

    “Is the ACA a sloppy wet kiss to the insurance industry, as the firebaggers claim, or is it a step on the road to universal access?”

    It’s both. The “firebaggers” are right that it’s a gift to the insurance industry, which I think we would all be better off without (my wife’s battles with insurance companies have pratically become a full time job), and I’m really sorry we didn’t get a public option. But it does get more people covered, and if the insurance companies are too abusive toward all their new forced customers, it will build pressure for a better alternative.

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