Appeals Court Rules Against ACA

Via TPM:

A federal appeals court dealt a huge blow to Obamacare on Tuesday, banning the federal exchange from providing subsidies to residents of the 36 states it serves.

A divided three-judge panel on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the text of the Affordable Care Act restricts the provision of premium tax credits to state-run exchanges. The two Republican appointees on the panel ruled against Obamacare while the one Democratic appointee ruled for the law.

“We conclude that appellants have the better of the argument: a federal Exchange is not an “Exchange established by the State,” and section 36B does not authorize the IRS to provide tax credits for insurance purchased on federal Exchanges,” Judge Thomas B. Griffith wrote for the court.

His ruling was joined in a concurring opinion by George H. W. Bush-appointed Judge A. Raymond Randolph.

So first the Republicans whined about the onerous burden of requiring states to stand up their own exchanges, and after the feds stepped in to provide platforms for the slacker states, they found this technicality to void the subsidies.

Honest to Christ, these bastards will do anything in their power to keep people from having access to decent healthcare. Will the general public finally wake up and see these pricks for the insurance-company bag men and craven political actors that they are? Probably not.

The ruling can be read at the link above.

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290 replies
  1. 1
    srv says:

    Words matter.

  2. 2
    ChaseBears says:

    i see a lot of state attorney generals in this lawsuit.

    it’s amazing how much effort they’ll put into screwing over their own people.

    EDIT:

    Appellants timely appealed the district court’s orders, and we have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1291. Our review of the orders is de novo, and “[o]n an independent review of the record, we will uphold an agency action unless we find it to be ‘arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with law.’” Holland v. Nat’l Mining Ass’n, 309 F.3d 808, 814 (D.C. Cir. 2002) (quoting 5 U.S.C. § 706(2)(A)). Because we conclude that the ACA unambiguously restricts the section 36B subsidy to insurance purchased on Exchanges “established by the State,” we reverse the district court and vacate the IRS’s regulation

    so basically they decided against the ACA because they could.

  3. 3

    Well, congratulations, Republicans. Really, congratulations.

    It looks like you’ll succeed in denying people affordable, decent health care plans. Oh, no doubt, the government will appeal, and I imagine the full court might rule in their favor as the lower courts have, but then, you know, it’ll go to SCOTUS and I’m sure it will die there.

    But kudos. You’ve saved people from the tyranny of being able to go see their doctors without worrying about whether or not they can afford to eat that week.

    Well done. Jesus would be so proud.

  4. 4
    Hill Dweller says:

    Today’s decision will be vacated when it is reheard en banc.

  5. 5
    Gretchen says:

    Even the insurance companis cat be in favor of this. Think of all the business theyll lose.

  6. 6
    askew says:

    Doesn’t this apply to only states that didn’t set-up their own exchanges? It’s still a big problem but one that should have been fixable at the legislative level if only the House GOP wasn’t insane. Unfortunately, they are insane and the Supreme Court doesn’t give a shit about the law any longer. They are just another deranged Republican entity.

  7. 7
    Hill Dweller says:

    @ChaseBears:

    i see a lot of state attorney generals in this lawsuit.

    Every Democrat in the country should run on Republicans trying to take away their insurance.

  8. 8
    flukebucket says:

    What I honestly do not understand is why the insurance companies are against it. I do understand that it puts some regulation on them in that they can’t abscond with all of the money but it also gives them more customers and access to the public trough.

  9. 9
    Chopper says:

    so the part of the law that states that the federal exchanges are the same as and established at the behest of the respective states, the judges just didn’t read that far into the fucking statute?

  10. 10
    cleek says:

    @Hill Dweller:
    yes, this.

    “Remember that time you got to go to the doctor? Thank the Dems for that. But now you can’t anymore? Thank the GOP for that.”

  11. 11
    Suffern ACE says:

    And the chances that this will be fixed before 2022 are slim.

  12. 12
    askew says:

    And instead of focusing on the millions of people who are potentially hurt by this ruling, the media will focus on how this is a loss for Obama and talk about the midterms. No discussion of how House GOP could fix this in a millisecond.

  13. 13

    It seems to me that many of the Republican judges are fighting Civil War II. This time through courts, rather than the battlefield. This is not going to end well for them.

  14. 14
    flukebucket says:

    Today’s decision will be vacated when it is reheard en banc.

    Is it possible to explain this in terms a dumb ass can understand?

  15. 15
    japa21 says:

    This will end up going nowhere. The decision will be put on hold until heard en banc, which automatically throws the opinion out. I can’t see the whole court ruling this way.

    What this can be, however, is another motivating factor to get Dems to the polls. This can be fixed by getting a Dem majority in the House.

    Additionally, this shows the importance of flipping a lot of state houses and governorships.
    ultimately, this will hurt the red states the most.

  16. 16
    Hill Dweller says:

    The clueless fucks in the Beltway are already needlessly hyperventilating.

  17. 17
    MomSense says:

    I was finally starting to actually get ahead thanks to the ACA. I am the fucking poster child for what women who are not wealthy are supposed to do. I work my ass off to support my kids and having health care makes a big difference. I can’t afford to go without it again.

    If these assholes in robes insist on being activist judges I think it is only fair that they should hear from activists. Anyone have the time to find out what their phone numbers are? I would really like to let them know what I think of them. I’m feeling like calling these death eating AGs while I’m feeling nice and rageful.

  18. 18
    Chopper says:

    @flukebucket:

    The decision was made by a three judge panel, not the full court. They can and will ask the whole court to weigh in.

  19. 19
    C.V. Danes says:

    Maybe I’m looking back with rose-colored glasses, but it did seem, once upon a time, that the judiciary at least appeared to keep their politics under their robes. Now, it just seems the conservative judges are mostly just blatantly another arm of the Republican agenda.

  20. 20
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Hill Dweller: Today’s decision will be vacated when it is reheard en banc.

    How long does that take? And does the law remain in tact while we wait for that?

  21. 21
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    IGMFY. And we call it the “white house” for a reason.This is who they are.

    Tumbrels on sale this fall I hope. And really dull guillotine blades.

  22. 22
  23. 23
    askew says:

    @japa21:

    And then they appeal to the Supreme Court and no one knows what they will do. There has been no legal consistency in the Roberts Court. It’s all about partisanship.

  24. 24
    David in NY says:

    @flukebucket: Three judges of the court sit on a panel of the court, and the panel decided this. But the whole court consists of a dozen or more judges, and having lost in front of three, the government can seek review by the full, en banc (i.e. the whole bench), court. I don’t know enough about the DC court to know if the prediction of reversal by the en banc court is right.

  25. 25
    burnspbesq says:

    @Chopper:

    You really have to read the opinion. It’s mind-blowingly bad.

    As I said below, if Judge Randolph’s analysis is right, then everything we thought we know about how to interpret complex Federal statutes was wrong.

  26. 26
    Chickamin Slam says:

    It doesn’t matter anymore. Not in this country.

    If the economy is doing so well and fewer people are on food stamps then why do I see more people living in their cars than before?

    Friends are losing their minds. One is marrying someone with a dubious past complete with lavish wedding, ring, etc when they don’t make that much in three years.

    Another is selling everything and planning to move “as far away from here as possible.” Bolivia? Some other place in South America?

    Newspapers are running stories of apparently successful Americans retiring abroad.

    This ruling may be appealed but it will eventually reach the “Supreme” Court … where five paid for individuals will meet with someone in closely held prayer before reading their scripts … I mean issuing their “findings” …

    It’s gotten me to consider this idea … the Powers That Be want to cull the population. Fewer people to compete for supplies. Fewer people to get in the way of the rich. Why else sabotage health care repeatedly?

  27. 27
    dmsilev says:

    @David in NY: Ever since the Senate did away with filibusters on (non-Supreme) judicial nominations, the DC Appeals Court has a majority of their judges appointed by Democrats.

  28. 28
    beth says:

    @burnspbesq:

    As I said below, if Judge Randolph’s analysis is right, then everything we thought we know about how to interpret complex Federal statutes was wrong.

    Can you explain in layman’s terms a bit more about this? Thanks.

  29. 29
    D58826 says:

    @flukebucket: There are 10-12 or so judges on the appeals court. An appeal is heard by 3 judges. In this case the two GOP judges voted the party line. When the case is reheard or revoted, not sure which, ‘en banc’ all of the judges will be involved. Since the court has a democratic judge majority, the assumption is the vote will go the other way. SCOTUS will of course decide it’s unconstitutional because the moon was in the wrong house when the law was passed.

    The GOP has spent the last 30+ years packing the federal courts with low grade hacks that should not be allowed to fix a parking ticket but we are stuck with it for the foreseeable future.

  30. 30
    Roger Moore says:

    @flukebucket:

    Is it possible to explain this in terms a dumb ass can understand?

    This ruling was made by only three of the judges on the Court. The government will ask to have it reviewed by the entire DC Circuit court- that’s what en banc means- which will overturn the ruling now that Obama has been able to fill it completely and the majority of the judges have been appointed by Democrats. Of course, the plaintiffs will then appeal to the Supreme Court, but there’s at least a tiny chance that they’ll refuse to hear it.

  31. 31
    askew says:

    What happens before Obama Admin appeals decision? Are people supposed to cancel policies they can no longer afford? Can the Obama admin (which never moves fast) get a stay put in place today to stop confusion for millions?

  32. 32
    burnspbesq says:

    @flukebucket:

    Federal courts of appeal assign cases to three-judge panels that receive briefs, hear oral argument, and issue decisions. If you get an adverse ruling from the panel, you can ask the full court to rehear the case “en banc” (roughly translated from the Latin, “as a body”). I would have to look at the rules to be sure, but in think I dimly recall that only active judges participate in en banc reconsideration–which would be interesting here because two of the three judges on the panel were on senior status.

    When the en banc decision in al-Bahlul came out, I think there were only seven judges who participated.

    I wonder whether Srinivasan would feel obligated to recuse himself. I would have to re-check the timeline to see whether the case was in the SG’s office while he was still there.

  33. 33
    dmsilev says:

    @askew: Since the subsidies come in the form of tax credits, as long as the appeal is in place before the end of the tax year it should be ok. Besides, this ruling can’t have come as any sort of surprise (it was predicted months ago by commenters) and I imagine the appeal has already been mostly written.

  34. 34
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @beth: Judge Randolph’s opinion relies on a drafting error in one sentence to overturn a very large and complex piece of legislation. the normal practice is the opposite. If it is obvious that the one little sentence says the opposite of everything else in the legislation, courts treat it as a drafting error and interpret in a way that keeps the law alive. It is sort of like if you type a multiple paragraph comment but forget the word “not” in one of your sentences. Your reader, if acting in good faith, will say “huh?” and then nod and read the “not” into the sentence.

  35. 35
    Another Holocene Human (now with new computer) says:

    @Gretchen: Exactly. They want customers and free gubmint money. If the subsidies go away, the regulations won’t so what would they gain here? They’re in business to make money, not pursue spite crusades.

    This is why you never hear top level GOPers talking about Sec-8 even though their rabble base hates it as much as all the other “welfare”. Some GOP landlords make out like bandits on this program.

  36. 36
    moonbat says:

    @merrinc: Thanks for posting that link. It’s my birthday today and I didn’t want it ruined quite this early. It is extraordinarily likely that the full circuit will throw out this ridiculously reasoned/worded decision. But hopefully it will wake people up to the fact that we need to throw these GOPpers out of office for all eternity.

  37. 37
    Cervantes says:

    @David in NY: The whole court is more Democratic than this more Republican panel thereof.

  38. 38
    boatboy_srq says:

    I’ll bet good money that most of the folks who voted Teatard and signed up for the fed exchanges will only swing further right because Obummer!!!!! stole their healthcare.

    Please PLEASE let the en banc hearing throw this decision out.

    @Gretchen: If the GOTea didn’t listen to the insurance companies (who were at least mildly in favor of ACA when it was proposed) before, it’s unlikely they’ll listen now.

  39. 39
    srv says:

    @Chickamin Slam:

    If the economy is doing so well and fewer people are on food stamps then why do I see more people living in their cars than before?

    Friends are losing their minds. One is marrying someone with a dubious past complete with lavish wedding, ring, etc when they don’t make that much in three years.

    There is a disconnect between reality and the reality that the news and the administration report.

  40. 40
    peach flavored shampoo says:

    Complete nothingburger. Overturned upon a en banc hearing. Guarenteed.

    Now, whether SCOTUS picks it up and then bitch-slaps the Appeals Court via some Activist Judging(TM), that’s the unknown. But all the flopsweat by the TV pundits is embarrassing, as they surely know all this but refuse to admit it, lest they kill the drama.

  41. 41
    Cervantes says:

    @dmsilev: Right on all counts.

  42. 42
    Chris says:

    @Roger Moore:

    After the Supreme Court’s last decision, I’d hoped that at least would be the end of it (they got their pound of flesh, destroying the Medicaid expansion requirement and thus allowing the fascist states to continue screwing over their poor). Apparently not. One can hope the Supreme Court will make the mostly right decision, but hell, my faith in our judicial institutions is at an all time low right now.

  43. 43
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @japa21: @peach flavored shampoo:

    How many votes for cert? I think it’s safe to assume 4.

    So does it really matter what the en-banc decision is?

    Remember, organs of the State, like the court, exist to serve the aims of the Party, because the Party, and not the court, is the Vanguard of the Revolution.

    In fact, come the revolution, the State, and all of its organs, are fated to wither away.

    The GOP is the last major Leninist party in the parliamentary world.

  44. 44
    Cervantes says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): This “acting in good faith” of which you speak … tell me more for it interests me strangely.

  45. 45
    MomSense says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name):

    if acting in good faith

    And this is the problem.

  46. 46
    askew says:

    @dmsilev:

    @askew: Since the subsidies come in the form of tax credits, as long as the appeal is in place before the end of the tax year it should be ok. Besides, this ruling can’t have come as any sort of surprise (it was predicted months ago by commenters) and I imagine the appeal has already been mostly written.

    But once the news starts reporting this decision it will cause people to panic and cancel their policies. The Obama admin needs to assure people that this isn’t a final decision and that this could be corrected by Congress.

  47. 47
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @burnspbesq:

    You really have to read the opinion. It’s mind-blowingly bad.

    I’ll take your word for it. With a fully staffed court, en banc should be promising, no?

    O/T, I am testifying this evening before our county commissioners in favor of continuing current level for the indigent care levy for hospitals. A focus of mine will be on the costs saved by timely treatment, both in terms of less use of services at later times, and for behavioral health, avoiding the revolving door to jails. Getting the levy passed again will be a tough slog in this (very red) county, because “there’s already medicaid expansion, so why should we pay twice.”

  48. 48
    Cervantes says:

    @burnspbesq: More nearly “as a (whole) bench.”

  49. 49
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Cervantes: I was speaking of readers of blog comments. But even here, we have many will leap on a poorly worded sentence, take it out of context, and then proclaim the writer a pariah/monster/fascist/Sasquatch/etc.

  50. 50
    burnspbesq says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name):

    Who knew that the well-being of millions of people could be imperiled by two judges who don’t understand (or, more likely, chose to ignore) the meaning of the word “such?”

  51. 51
    Shakezula says:

    More brilliant statergery from the people who are surprised when their Base objects to cutting school lunches and unemployment benefits.

    I wonder how they’ll blame Obama for the blowback?

    Also, where does this leave Orange Boner’s lawsuit?

  52. 52
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    The Rethuglican party, as it currently exists, must be destroyed.

  53. 53
    catclub says:

    @Chopper:

    so the part of the law that states that the federal exchanges are the same as and established at the behest of the respective states

    Link, pointer to section? Thanks

  54. 54
    Cervantes says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): My apologies for a poor attempt at humor. (Look at the comment after mine for a much better one.)

  55. 55
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @askew: it will cause people to panic and cancel their policies.

    Richard Mayhew can answer this better, probably (if he’s around) but generally health insurance policy changes can’t be made outside the “open enrollment” period unless you can prove some life-changing event, like getting laid off or moving from one state to another. Canceling a policy mid-stream is very hard, intentionally.

  56. 56
    Shakezula says:

    @MomSense:

    THOMAS B. GRIFFITH
    (202) 216-7170

    A. RAYMOND RANDOLPH
    (202) 216-7425

  57. 57
    catclub says:

    @askew:

    this could be corrected by Congress.

    Facts not in evidence, gallows humor, etc.

  58. 58
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Another Holocene Human (now with new computer):

    They’re in business to make money, not pursue spite crusades.

    On the other hand, the GOP, particularly the teatard component of same, IS in the business of pursing spite crusades.

  59. 59
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Cervantes: No apology needed. I just thought it was a good opportunity to point out that these judges are doing exactly what that type of commenter does or vice versa. In neither case should much credit redound to them.

  60. 60
    Cermet says:

    If these pricks and sink to the bottom of a cesspit pile of shit judges are right, than how can the Feds subsidize bridges, roads and other just “State” projects? Can’t by that logic but this is done all the time – so their ruling is wrong and just as full of shit as they are.

  61. 61
    Gordon, the Big Express Engine says:

    @Gin & Tonic: in the spirit of drafting errors, I read your comment and skipped over “off” the first time!

  62. 62
    Chris says:

    @Cermet:

    If these pricks and sink to the bottom of a cesspit pile of shit judges are right, than how can the Feds subsidize bridges, roads and other just “State” projects?

    ¨

    Don’t say that too loudly. We don’t want them getting ideas.

  63. 63
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Cermet: Not that I want to defend these judges, but the ruling didn’t say that the federal government could not fund any satate projects. It said that the wording of one sentence in the ACA meant that ACA subsidies are only available on state exchanges. Big difference.

  64. 64
    MomSense says:

    @Shakezula:

    heh heh heh.

    Will be oh so polite in my dissent.

  65. 65
    J.D. Rhoades says:

    I’m wondering if this ruling will finally get people to realize that Republican governments that refused to set up exchanges are going to cost them a boatload of money.

  66. 66
    J.D. Rhoades says:

    I’m wondering if this ruling will finally get people to realize that Republican governments that refused to set up exchanges are going to cost them a boatload of money.

  67. 67
    Cervantes says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): When Oliver Wendell Holmes said that “we should be eternally vigilant against attempts to check the expression of opinions that we loathe and believe to be fraught with death,” he hadn’t met this three-judge panel.

  68. 68
    burnspbesq says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name):

    It said that the wording of one sentence in the ACA meant that ACA subsidies are only available on state exchanges.

    And somehow danced around language in another section that clearly (at least I thought it was clear) authorized the fed to set up and operate state exchanges for those states that chose not to set up their own.

  69. 69
    Cervantes says:

    @Cermet: No, it’s not all that sort of logic. You have to look at actual statutes.

  70. 70
    burnspbesq says:

    @J.D. Rhoades:

    I’m wondering if this ruling will finally get people to realize that Republican governments that refused to set up exchanges are going to cost them a boatload of money.

    Naw. It’ll be all about how the Eebil Kenyan Mooslim Usurper cruelly dangled the prospect of affordable health care in front of millions of Americans before snatching it away through the use of legal mumbo-jumbo.

  71. 71
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @burnspbesq:

    And somehow danced around language in another section that clearly (at least I thought it was clear) authorized the fed to set up and operate state exchanges for those states that chose not to set up their own.

    Funny how that works, isn’t it? Not that it’s partisan in any fashion, because we all know that courts are impartial.

  72. 72
    Cacti says:

    This is why the Senate GOPers so vehemently opposed the current POTUS’s ability to make any appointments to the DC circuit.

    It was their preferred forum for shopping right wing hackery.

    ETA: for en banc review purposes, the active members of the DC court now number 7 democratic appointees and 4 republican.

  73. 73

    What’s astonishing is that the conservative states that have brought this suit think that it’ll help their electoral chances to tell millions of people that have gotten health insurance via the exchange that their rates will go up simply to score political points. All of the polling suggests that once people get into the system, they like the system. Denying them access to a system that they like is electoral suicide. Basically, let’s piss off red state voters for the sake of pissing off red state voters.

    Let’s see if voters in November get a clue (not holding my breath).

  74. 74
    Suffern ACE says:

    @⚽️ Martin: doubtful. Those communications on rates and fines come from the federal government, not your congressman.

  75. 75

    @Suffern ACE:

    not your congressman.

    They do in an election season. You don’t think every Dem running in those states won’t be running ads telling voters their insurance rates are going to go up because of the Republican?

  76. 76
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Chickamin Slam: “One is marrying someone with a dubious past complete with lavish wedding, ring, etc when they don’t make that much in three years.”

    If this is a sign of the imminent collapse of the USA then we’re further along that I thought

  77. 77
    Gypsy Howell says:

    Unlike Medicaid expansion, which hits the poors, this one is going to hit middle class folks, and hit them hard.

  78. 78
    srv says:

    Rue Paul’s FREE is not FREE, PLEASE HALP!

    If you believe the mainstream media, John McCain and William Kristol and liberal Keynesians like Janet Yellen and Paul Krugman supposedly disagree on just about everything.

    But the truth is all four support both welfare and warfare spending. They just disagree over “details” – like whether we should spend more on warfare than welfare, which countries to bomb, and whether we should stick with ObamaCare or adopt “ObamaCare lite.”

    And they all agree that anyone who dares to make a principled case for eliminating the welfare-warfare state and the Federal Reserve’s fiat money system (which makes it possible for politicians to spend unlimited amounts on war and welfare) should be silenced.

    That’s why McCain, Yellen, Kristol, and Krugman would all be uncorking their top-shelf champagne if my Foundation for Rational Economics and Education (FREE) were forced to close its doors.

    Today, I’m writing to ask you to help me stop that from happening.

    Since I founded it in 1976, FREE has fought statism in all its forms — standing firm for liberty and limited government.

    But sadly, as I write you today, FREE’s bank accounts have dwindled to virtually nothing.

  79. 79
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @⚽️ Martin: They will flock to the polls…. to punish Democrats. Because by then it will have been Obama who took their Obamacare away. That’s what the media is for.

  80. 80
    SatanicPanic says:

    @⚽️ Martin: Probably get mad at Obama for not writing the law correctly, even though it’s over a billion pages /something like that

  81. 81
    Suffern ACE says:

    @SatanicPanic: Indian culture has survived for 3,500 years on that principle.

  82. 82
    Richard Mayhew says:

    @Gretchen: yeah, this kills insurance companies that are going on the Exchange in good faith that the subsidies will be there.

  83. 83
    Tone In DC says:

    They want customers and free gubmint money. If the subsidies go away, the regulations won’t so what would they gain here? They’re in business to make money, not pursue spite crusades.

    The insurers do want that sweet lucre. Putting aside the insurance companies… These wingers RUN on spite. It’s what fuels them, motivates them, gets them up in the morning.

    These judges, who apparently cannot parse a sentence (when they don’t want to, anyway) are residents of Spite Central. Rant ends here, now returning you to your local scheduled programming.

    Glad to hear you got a new PC.

  84. 84
    burnspbesq says:

    @catclub:

    Link, pointer to section? Thanks

    Judge Edwards’ dissenting opinion gets this part exactly right. From page 9:

    Of course, the ACA is broader than just § 36B and §18031, and in 42 U.S.C. § 18041 it permits a State to elect to allow HHS to establish the Exchange on behalf of the State. In such circumstances, however, the Act requires HHS to establish and operate “such Exchange.” Id. §18041(c) (emphasis added). The use of “such” can reasonably be interpreted to deem the HHS-created Exchange to be the equivalent of an Exchange created in the first instance by the State. That is, when HHS creates an exchange under §18041(c), it does so on behalf of the State, essentially standing in its stead. Put differently, under the ACA, an Exchange within a State is a given. The only question is whether the State opts to create the Exchange on its own or have HHS do it on its behalf. On this view, “established by the State” is term of art that includes any Exchange within a State.

  85. 85
    Citizen Alan says:

    @Chickamin Slam:

    It’s gotten me to consider this idea … the Powers That Be want to cull the population. Fewer people to compete for supplies. Fewer people to get in the way of the rich. Why else sabotage health care repeatedly?

    I’ve said for years now with regard to the environment that everything makes sense if you assume that the 1% wants to exterminate the bottom 90% so that they can rule over the 10% that’s left without needing any changes to their rate of consumption. Automation and 3D printing has made the entire working class (outside of the service industry) obsolete, so culling the herd is in their best interests.

  86. 86
    Chris says:

    @Tone In DC:

    The insurers do want that sweet lucre. Putting aside the insurance companies… These wingers RUN on spite. It’s what fuels them, motivates them, gets them up in the morning.

    + 1.

  87. 87
    Cervantes says:

    @srv: Quoting:

    But sadly, as I write you today, FREE’s bank accounts have dwindled to virtually nothing.

    What’s that again about the Invisible Hand of the FREE market?

  88. 88
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @MomSense: Dems should be using poster children like you in political attack ads against the GOP ahead of the midterm elections. The ACA needs to be personalized so that the electorate can understand how it has helped millions of their fellow citizens. Right now it seems that the GOP attack on the ACA has turned into an Obama vs. GOP fight when it should be a People vs. GOP fight.

  89. 89
    Citizen Alan says:

    @dmsilev:

    IOW, people on subsidies will keep their insurance and then get hit with huge tax bills next January AND find that their 2015 premiums shoot through the roof.

  90. 90
    J.D. Rhoades says:

    @⚽️ Martin:

    You don’t think every Dem running in those states won’t be running ads telling voters their insurance rates are going to go up because of the Republican?

    Do the Democrats have the gumption to do this or will they just try to run farther away from Obamacare?

  91. 91
    Cervantes says:

    @burnspbesq: I don’t yet see how the full bench, or even this Supreme Court, could disagree.

    Yet.

  92. 92
    catclub says:

    @srv: I would like to help, but my money is tied up in an emu farm.

  93. 93
    dmsilev says:

    @Cervantes: The full Appeals Court bench, certainly, but the Supremes? I wish I had that confidence.

  94. 94
    Cervantes says:

    @J.D. Rhoades:

    Do the Democrats have the gumption to do this?

    If they want to have any chance of making inroads in red states, they must at least try to do it.

  95. 95
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Citizen Alan: They seem to be consuming pretty much whatever they want right now.

  96. 96
    rikyrah says:

    @burnspbesq:

    I wonder whether Srinivasan would feel obligated to recuse himself. I would have to re-check the timeline to see whether the case was in the SG’s office while he was still there.

    PHUCK any Democrat recusing themselves.

    No way. No how.

  97. 97
    J.D. Rhoades says:

    @Cervantes:

    Are you listening, Kay Hagan?

  98. 98
    burnspbesq says:

    @Cervantes:

    As the guy who once said that there was no way for Scalia to get out of the corner that his concurrence in Raich had painted him into, I find your faith inspiring. Or sumpin sumpin like dat.

  99. 99
    Kay says:

    I think what people don’t understand (and political media won’t admit) is that there won’t be any health care reform if this law is killed. No President or politician will touch this issue again. There is absolutely no political upside to making health insurance affordable to the people who don’t already have it. That is now abundantly clear, and we have two Democratic Presidents years apart to prove it.

    Whatever differences one has with Bill Clinton or President Obama, I think one has to admit that both men are really talented political actors. No one markedly more talented is likely to come riding in on the next cycle. That’s a fantasy.

    If neither of them could do it, you have to face reality and admit it ain’t gonna get done. It’ll be the new Third Rail of politics. No one, Democrat or Republican, will touch it. You’d be crazy to do it.

  100. 100
    dmsilev says:

    So, what is the timeline here? The administration has already said they’re going to ask for an en banc hearing at the Appeals Court. How long does that typically take (multiple months I assume, but is this a ~6 month thing or a ~1 year thing)? After that, assuming the full bench throws out this decision, the plaintiffs will presumably try to appeal to the Supremes. Next year sometime?

  101. 101
    Cervantes says:

    @dmsilev: “Yet.”

    I am still trying to put myself in Scalia’s shoes. It’s an excruciating exercise. We shall see if the pain gives me any insight.

  102. 102

    @SatanicPanic: You guys are confusing abstract vs concrete effects of government. Conservatives will do that when it’s some abstract regulation or abortion that they assume will never impact their family or some such. When you’ve just gotten health care and/or just seen the savings from your old policy, and someone comes along (during open enrollment for next year, no less) and tells you that you will need to go back to the old system, it becomes very personal. It stops being about fucking over the poors or the sluts, and becomes all about me. That’s why guns and taxes play so well with conservatives, they’re very concrete impacts of government. This is too. This is dangerous for the GOP. It was fine a year ago before anyone signed up – it was all abstract then. It’s not any longer.

  103. 103
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Cervantes: You’re forgetting Justice Robert’s Wheel of Newly Discovered Doctrines. That’s how we got the patchwork Medicaid extensions. He’ll find something,

  104. 104
    Lynn Dee says:

    @srv:
    Yes they do. But there’s a fair amount of discretion (even though discretion isn’t the word that would be applied to it) in statutory interpretation. One rule, for example, is that a particular provision be interpreted in light of the statutory scheme of which it’s a part. Now, that’s only if there’s no “wiggle room” in understanding the statutory language on its face — which is where that discretion comes into play. One judge’s “wiggle room” may be another judge’s strait jacket.

  105. 105
    catclub says:

    @burnspbesq: Thanks! Kind of what I thought. The State exchange is the exchange that caters to the insurance plans that are valid for that state, for the citizens of that state. Doesn’t matter who runs the exchange.

  106. 106
    burnspbesq says:

    @rikyrah:

    Umm, sorry, but no. Compliance with the rules of professional conduct is never optional.

  107. 107

    @J.D. Rhoades: It’s a pocketbook issue now. They’re fools if they don’t run on it. GOP owned that shit, and they’re now leaving it on the table for Dems to pick up.

  108. 108
    Lynn Dee says:

    Honest to Christ, these bastards will do anything in their power to keep people from having access to decent healthcare.

    That’s it exactly. Fucking Republicans.

  109. 109
    rikyrah says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    you are right about the ads

  110. 110
    Cervantes says:

    @Kay:

    Whatever differences one has with Bill Clinton or President Obama, I think one has to admit that both men are really talented political actors. No one markedly more talented is likely to come riding in on the next cycle.

    You’re looking at it all wrong. We’re perfectly primed for another “Nixon in China” moment. All we need is the Nixon.

    (Did I just say that? Shoot me now.)

  111. 111
    Keith G says:

    @askew: Go here for Obama’s press office’s words of comfort.

    Chill. Chill. Chill.

    Don’t get caught by click generating headlines.

  112. 112
    Emma says:

    @burnspbesq: So our side obeys the rules while theirs craps on the law. What a wonderful deal you offer. There’s a commenter here (apologies for not remembering the nym) who mentioned recently that he now understood the French Revolution better. I’m beginning to reach that level myself.

  113. 113
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @srv: When I hear the word “statism” I reach for my Uzi.

  114. 114
    burnspbesq says:

    Longer term, the truly scary thing to contemplate is what sort of ideas the bat-guano-crazy libtard/radical right wing law school professors who dream up these arguments are planting in the minds of our impressionable young’uns.

    Seriously. If I got one free kill, I would be tempted to use it on Randy Barnett.

  115. 115
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Cervantes: They’re “the Cruel shoes”.

  116. 116
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Kay: yep. If this fails, we basically have to wait for health care costs to spiral out of control such that middle class people really can’t afford to take Junior to get a strep test. Then maybe, maybe, it will get talked about again.

  117. 117
    Cervantes says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Justice Robert’s Wheel of Newly Discovered Doctrines.

    I think I saw that show on TV one evening.

  118. 118
    SatanicPanic says:

    @⚽️ Martin: I’m not confident that they’ll see things that clearly or that healthcare is at the top of right wing voter concerns. Plus they’ve kind of painted themselves into a corner- do you show up at a townhall and yell at your rep because they don’t want to pass a law extending the exchanges to red states? That would require a lot of shameful backtracking. Then again, wingers have no shame, so maybe you’re right.

  119. 119
    Cervantes says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    When I hear the word “statism” I reach for my Uzi.

    BDS, please.

  120. 120
    burnspbesq says:

    @Emma:

    And what’s your alternative? Delegitimize the entire judicial process? Then what? Gunplay instead of litigation to resolve ordinary commercial disputes? Goldman hires somebody to blow up SEC headquarters because it doesn’t like a new rule?

  121. 121
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Emma: It was Chris.

    And he’s right. Revolutions are started by people who think they have nothing left to lose, so why not go for it.

    The Rethugs are creating the conditions for that to happen. You want to try to avoid this (Bismarck understood the dynamic) because you don’t know, once the process of Revolution gets started, how it will turn out. Odds are good that a tyranny as bad as or worse than the current one will result, at least in the short-to-medium term. France went through such a process, and so did Russia. France, after a century and a half or so, turned out more or less OK. Jury is still out on Russia.

  122. 122
    Lynn Dee says:

    @David in NY:

    I heard this morning coming in that the “full bench” will consist of all the “active judges” — which apparently does not include the two judges of the three judge panel who actually voted against the subsidies in the federally run exchange. Apparently those two are “senior judges” or some such? Something more than sitting on assignment, I gathered — like halfway out to pasture maybe? I also heard (this is on NPR, I’m talking) that the full bench of 11 “active” judges includes 7 who were Democratic-appointed and 4 who were Republican-appointed.

    I can’t vouch for any of that information, but I was somewhat comforted. Sigh.

  123. 123
    Suffern ACE says:

    @Citizen Alan: here. Let this stew your paranoid concerns. Now imagine John Roberts as Chief Justice for 60 more years.

  124. 124
    lol says:

    It impacts the states that wouldn’t setup exchanges. In other words, red and purple states.

    Let’s see if swing voters like being shit on.

  125. 125
    Kay says:

    @Cervantes:

    The people who don’t have health insurance aren’t the people who matter. It’s horrible, but it’s true. As long as the vast majority of white college-educated (employed) people have some semblance of employer-provided health insurance, the political calculus won’t change.

    I made GOTV phone calls for Ted Strickland in 2010. I will never forget it. The only questions I got on the health care law were from people who HAVE health insurance and were worried it would somehow be taken away by the operation of the law.

  126. 126
    catclub says:

    if this ruling stands:
    The message that will slowly seep out is: If you lived in a state that had its own exchange, then you would get the subsidy, but since you live where you do, you do not get something that those people in blue states are getting.

    I think the best case for the GOP will be that the Roberts court will rule that this upsets the idea of equal state sovereignty (a completely bogus, but useful idea) and throw out the entire law.

    Because, if the Roberts court simply validates
    this Appeals court ruling, the Obama administration will NOT throw up their hands and give up. They will ALLOW the subsidy for those in states with state run exchanges, and CANCEL ( loudly, and I would hope with crocodile tears) the subsidy for those in states without state run exchanges.

    The question will then be: what were they thinking when they filed this case?

  127. 127
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Oddly enough I just wrote a blog post on this (damn, now I feel dirty). But uh yeah, revolution= bad idea. If we tried that in America we’d end up in something roughly like Franco’s Spain. No thanks.

  128. 128
    Cervantes says:

    @burnspbesq: Well, sure, but seriously, it may be useful to imagine (I don’t say “predict”) what they might come up with.

    It can be entertaining, too, if, like them, you’re none too squeamish about all the sick people and premature corpses.

  129. 129
    catclub says:

    @Kay:

    were from people who HAVE health insurance and were worried it would somehow be taken away

    But NOW there are people on the exchanges who have insurance. Maybe they will be activated!

  130. 130
    cmorenc says:

    @askew:

    It’s still a big problem but one that should have been fixable at the legislative level if only the House GOP wasn’t insane.

    This is a potential problem that should have been fixed in the original legislation, since even before it was foreseeable just to what extent many GOP-controlled states would resort to to attempt to obstruct and undermine the ACA, the possibility was obviously foreseeable that some states (possibly including some ACA-friendly blue states) might voluntarily elect to defer to Federal exchanges rather than construct their own exhange. This would not have insulated the ACA from the original challenge e.g. on commerce-clause grounds that was decided 5-4 upholding the act by SCOTUS in summer 2012, but it would have insulated the ACA from being so vulnerable to wilfully malicious statutory misinterpretation by partisan lower federal court judges.

  131. 131
    Baud says:

    The Fourth Circuit issued a decision today upholding the subsidies. So dueling decisions.

  132. 132
    Hill Dweller says:

    The 4th Circuit just(literally minutes ago) upheld the subsidies. I suspect we’ll hear next to nothing about their ruling.

  133. 133
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @catclub: Looking demographically at who obtains subsidized insurance on the exchanges, because of who tends to have employer-provided insurance — older, more affluent, whiter — they will be, unfortunately, the very people who tend to not vote.

  134. 134
    Chyron HR says:

    @Kay:

    I think what people don’t understand (and political media won’t admit) is that there won’t be any health care reform if this law is killed.

    Don’t be silly. FDL teaches us that the death of Obamacare will inevitably and immediately lead to the implementation of single-payer health care.

    I honestly expected it to happen by noon today, but I’m sure before rush hour we’ll be living in a soshamalist utopia.

  135. 135
    burnspbesq says:

    @Cervantes:

    Did I just say that? Shoot me now.

    BANG!

    ETA: Dammit, I missed, because I have the firearms skills of the average Open Carry Texas member.

  136. 136
    catclub says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    they will be, unfortunately, the very people who tend to not vote.

    Operative word is ‘tend’.
    This is not always the case. Voter discrimination laws have increased black turnout. Tell people they will lose something if they do not vote and they might get out and vote. Note my comment to Kay about this.
    Losing something you already have is MUCH more painful to people than getting something in the future, hence, the people who were due to benefit from the ACA did not vote in 2010, when the benefits were still in the future. Now they will LOSE THEIR Health insurance. Different!

  137. 137
    Lynn Dee says:

    @Chyron HR:

    Lol

  138. 138
    cmorenc says:

    @Emma:

    There’s a commenter here (apologies for not remembering the nym) who mentioned recently that he now understood the French Revolution better. I’m beginning to reach that level myself.

    Gotta be careful about invoking that notion – the inclination toward forceful insurrection against a noxiously unacceptable status quo is precisely what’s being whipped up among extreme tea-partiers and second-amendment extremists (the choice of “tea party” for the movement’s name is a quite deliberately pointed historical reference). That kind of talk among progressives can give inadvertent support to that kind of talk among extreme tea partiers.

  139. 139
    Emma says:

    @burnspbesq: I would say that the judicial process is well on its way to being delegitimized by conservative Supreme Court justices writing Opus Dei Catholicism into law and Republican judges bending law and language into pretzels so they can take a swing at the guy in the White House.

    Besides, in most people’s eyes the legitimacy of law is a damn poor excuse for someone’s child dying of strep throat or someone’s husband bleeding to death because they don’t have insurance.

  140. 140
    burnspbesq says:

    @Hill Dweller:

    Link to fourth circuit opinion (LOVE the caption). Reading now.

    http://www.ca4.uscourts.gov/Op.....1158.P.pdf

  141. 141
    dmsilev says:

    @Baud: So, in principle if the DC court reverses itself in the en-banc hearing (FY autocorrect; I don’t mean en-band), there would be agreement among the appeals courts and the Supremes could decide to give this a miss. Or they could decide to go after Obamacare again.

  142. 142
    piratedan says:

    @burnspbesq: Kris Kobach…. but hey, ymmv

  143. 143
    Emma says:

    @cmorenc: You sound like President Bush’s press secretary: “people need to watch what they say.”

    Tell me, when the next Republican president undoes everything Obama has done and begins to treat gays as “diseased people who must be interned” or removes minimum wage rules completely from the workplace, or any other of the things they advocate, how will the “legitimacy of the law” protect us?

  144. 144
    Pogonip says:

    @schrodinger’s cat: Seems to be working out fine so far.

    I can’t see the insurance companties being happy about this. All that Federal money, off-limits to them.

  145. 145
    Cervantes says:

    @Baud:

    The Fourth Circuit issued a decision today upholding the subsidies. So dueling decisions.

    Unanimous decision of a three-judge panel thereof.

  146. 146
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Hill Dweller: Well, the very top of my Google News page right now says “Appeals Courts Issue Conflicting Rulings on Health-Law Subsidies”

  147. 147
    dmsilev says:

    @burnspbesq: From the list of people/groups sending in briefs:

    SENATOR JOHN CORNYN; SENATOR TED CRUZ; SENATOR ORRIN HATCH; SENATOR MIKE LEE; SENATOR ROB PORTMAN; SENATOR MARCO RUBIO; CONGRESSMAN DARRELL ISSA

    vs.

    AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY; AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY CANCER ACTION NETWORK; AMERICAN DIABETES ASSOCIATION; AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION; PUBLIC HEALTH DEANS, CHAIRS, AND FACULTY

    Says it all, really.

  148. 148
    Anoniminous says:

    How does this not get to the Supreme Court?

  149. 149
    Kay says:

    @catclub:

    I got two questions: will my health insurance somehow be worse, and will people who get a subsidy have to pay the same amount towards health insurance that my employer makes me pay.

    Young men here asked me that too. If they make 21k a year and they pay 200 dollars a month towards premiums to their employer, they don’t want the uninsured person paying less than that.

    Maybe you’re right, and people in these states who had health insurance under the law and now will lose it will become “the insured”, because I swear the biggest political impediment to health insurance reform WERE the insured. A lot of it was just fear, that they would somehow lose under the rules of this new game. You can’t really blame them.

  150. 150
    MomSense says:

    @Kay:

    I made GOTV phone calls for Ted Strickland in 2010. I will never forget it. The only questions I got on the health care law were from people who HAVE health insurance and were worried it would somehow be taken away by the operation of the law.

    That was my experience as well which is why when people who wanted to kill health care from the left complained it wasn’t single payer or a more radical law, I knew that these were people who weren’t actually doing any of the work of passing health care reform. One phone bank shift and you knew that keeping the existing system (with improvements) for people who already had health care had to be the approach.

  151. 151
    catclub says:

    Person writing at TNR agrees with me. I am not worried.

    http://www.newrepublic.com/art.....ckfire-gop

  152. 152
    dmsilev says:

    @Anoniminous: Well, if (as expected) the full DC court reverses this decision, and given the decision on the same question from the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals (upholding the intent of the law), there’s no dispute between the Appeals Courts and the Supremes could choose to leave it alone. Doesn’t mean they’ll take that choice of course.

  153. 153
    Kay says:

    @dmsilev:

    I’m glad Portman is on there. He’s running for President as a sane Republican.

  154. 154
    cmorenc says:

    @dmsilev:

    @David in NY: Ever since the Senate did away with filibusters on (non-Supreme) judicial nominations, the DC Appeals Court has a majority of their judges appointed by Democrats.

    Retention of a GOP-appointed majority on the Federal DC Appeals Court (where a disproportionate percentage of cases involving agencies or regulations of the federal government are heard) was among the top-most goals of GOP filibuster obstruction of Obama’s ability to get nominees to this specific court confirmed. The result of this panel decision clearly shows why, as does the fact that the suit may likely have a much less hospitable reception among a majority of the entire set of D.C. Appeals Court Judges, once it’s reheard en banc.

  155. 155
    Shakezula says:

    @srv: Ron will bite the Invisible Hand when the fickle finger of the Free Market tries to poke him in the eye.

  156. 156
    kc says:

    I hate these fuckers.

  157. 157
    dmsilev says:

    Off topic, but this is hilarious:

    John Dingell ✔ @john_dingell
    Staff has now informed me of what a Kardashian is.

    I’m only left with more questions.

  158. 158
    Kay says:

    @MomSense:

    Especially at that time. People were absolutely terrified, losing their houses, 15% unemployment, all that. I just got this sense of panicked scarcity, like rushing for the lifeboats trampling the weaker along the way.

    I’m sorry these douchebags are adding to your stress level, BTW. They’re clueless and really reckless with other peoples’ lives and security.

    I don’t defend the judges anymore. If people believe they’re partisan hacks (and they do) well, that means they pissed away the credibility and deference that they received as an absolute free gift when they were appointed to the bench. Its not my job to shore up their credibility. It’s their job. They won’t get it back once it’s gone. I hope they know that.

  159. 159
    catclub says:

    @burnspbesq: The subsides are defined for those

    “enrolled in through an Exchange established by the State under [§1311] ”

    but the alternate exchanges are allowed in section 1321, not 1311. oy. Lawyers looking for every jot and tittle, doncha love em.

    I blame the legislators. If they had added “or under section 1321”, there is no case.

  160. 160
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Emma:

    Besides, in most people’s eyes the legitimacy of law is a damn poor excuse for someone’s child dying of strep throat or someone’s husband bleeding to death because they don’t have insurance.

    This decision will be overturned by the D.C. Circuit en banc whether one judge recuses himself or not. In addition, the Fourth Circuit just upheld the subsidy. No one is losing their insurance because of what happened today. And yes, it is important that we follow the rules. If not, we just get a left leaning illegitimate government.

  161. 161
    Shakezula says:

    @cmorenc: Please. The only way to avoid fueling the RW extremists’ non-stop pants wetting machine is for every single liberal and moderate to drop dead.

    And even then they’ll say that the stench of rotting bodies is some sort of terrorist attack.

  162. 162
    D58826 says:

    Totally OT but the rest of the world is heading down that slippery slope as well :

    FAA tells US airlines all flights to Tel Aviv airport in Israel prohibited for 24 hours.

  163. 163
    Kyle says:

    @dmsilev:

    SENATOR JOHN CORNYN; SENATOR TED CRUZ; SENATOR ORRIN HATCH; SENATOR MIKE LEE; SENATOR ROB PORTMAN; SENATOR MARCO RUBIO; CONGRESSMAN DARRELL ISSA

    In legal terms this list can be abbreviated elsewhere in the document as “The Assholes”

  164. 164

    @Kay:

    I got two questions: will my health insurance somehow be worse, and will people who get a subsidy have to pay the same amount towards health insurance that my employer makes me pay.

    So ‘how does this affect me?’ And ‘am I paying more and getting less?’ Reasonable.

    The more cynical Dems could simply point out that thanks to their GOP opponents, this ruling sends federal money to subsidizing individuals in states with exchanges and they get none of it.

    Bottom line, the subsidy is equivalent to bringing pork home. That still works. There’s nothing wrong with pointing that out to voters. Turn the ‘paying more and getting less’ concern on its side.

  165. 165
    MomSense says:

    @Kay:

    Thanks, Kay. My grandmother used to say that there are two kinds of people in the world – builders and destroyers. The Republican ideology seems to me to be one of destroying. They want to destroy the safety net and the institutions of government that are supposed to provide for the general welfare while ensuring fairness and accountability. Let’s just hope that what we are living through is the “death throes” of this destructive ideology.

  166. 166
    Citizen Alan says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Delegitimize the entire judicial process?

    The process is already illegitimate. I deeply regret getting a law degree because without it I would still have some illusions about our sham of a judicial system. At this point, I assume that the outcome of all SCOTUS decisions can be predetermined based on what is most advantageous to the GOP’s electoral prospects.

  167. 167
    Seanly says:

    Apparently the Richmond court sided with the federal government and upheld the same provision (via NYT)

    Of course, the best thing for us to do would be to just cut to the chase & have single payer or a system like Germany or Sweden.

  168. 168
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Hill Dweller: Well, it’s not part of the horse race narrative so loved by the vermin of the Village.

  169. 169
    burnspbesq says:

    God, that was awesome. I need a cigarette.

    From the concurring opinion in the Fourth Circuit.

    “[E]stablished by the State” indeed means established by the state – except when it does not, i.e., except when a state has failed to establish an Exchange and when the Secretary, charged with acting pursuant to a contingency for which Congress planned, id. §1321(c), establishes and operates the Exchange in place of the state. When a state elects not to establish an Exchange, the contingency provision authorizes federal officials to establish and operate “such Exchange” and to take any action adjunct to doing so.

  170. 170
    Citizen Alan says:

    @Suffern ACE:

    Not my problem. (1) I’ll be dead long before then. (2) I don’t expect American democracy to survive 60 years anyway.

  171. 171
    Anoniminous says:

    @dmsilev:

    Why wouldn’t Scalia, Alito, Thomas, and that other RW jackass – whose name I can’t remember off hand – want to hear it? Conservatives are desperate to gut ACA and this seems, to me, to give them that chance.

    ETA: IANAL

  172. 172
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @burnspbesq: Is the Fourth the old Rocket Docket, where everything BushCo needed a favorable ruling on got litigated? Or has it moderated some over the last six years?

  173. 173
    Emma says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): I am so glad you’re so sure things will work out in the end.

    So we must follow the law as the rightwingers eat us alive. We must be seen as legitimate when they do whatever they want. We must die honorably while they cheat.

    Sweet gig they got. Selfishly speaking, I’m on the wrong side.

  174. 174
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Shakezula: This is why I’m so pissed at Obama. He’s totally on his thin black ass at getting those FEMA camps up and running to process the scum of the right into something more useful. Like food for guano producing bats.

  175. 175
    rikyrah says:

    Your never too old to dance. Watch as Grandpa throw’s away his canes and get’s down at a wedding. His dance skills are simply awesome!

    http://youtu.be/Jxnhk45Jcjs

  176. 176
    Kay says:

    @⚽️ Martin:

    I thought they were reasonable questions too. I think a bigger political problem would have arisen if it had been unequal; two 25 year olds with the same income and one paying 200 for employer-provided and the other paying zero for “federally provided.” A lof of the analysis was from the perspective of the uninsured, but that isn’t how I think the law was created (either substantively or politically). It was meant to put both groups on the same footing, and the measure for that was “the insured”. They were the standard. It had to be neutral or plus to the insured and bring the uninsured up to them, but no further.

  177. 177
    boatboy_srq says:

    @burnspbesq: Are you referring to this? Because it sounds pretty delicious.

  178. 178
    burnspbesq says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    The Fourth has changed a lot over the years. It wasn’t that long ago that Harvie Wilkinson, a truly odious piece of work, was the modal judge on the Fourth.

  179. 179
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Emma: Do what you want. But your argument is akin to the the argument that, because they torture, we must torture. The forces of, shall we call it, good always operate with one hand tied behind their backs. I have no objection to fight hard, but I do object to fighting unethically.

    ETA: All I am saying is that today’s decision by the DC Circuit isn’t going to stand and that our side doesn’t need to break any rules for that to happen.

  180. 180
    MomSense says:

    @Emma:

    Emma, I think there is just no avoiding that we can’t get caught on our heels ever again by the Republicans. We (the left collectively) fucked up in 2010 by not appreciating how much progress we had truly made in 2009 and 2010 and by not digging in and fighting to build on it by winning those midterm elections. So much of the fucked up BS we are dealing with now like attacks on voting rights, contraception, unemployment insurance, food stamps, education funding, even basic road and bridge repair is thanks to 2010.

    Elections matter for good and ill. If our experience with the Supremes going after contraception and the right to organize combined with this decision on subsidies for health insurance wake people up to just how high the stakes are in the 2014 mid term elections and help Democrats win this time, then maybe this will all turn out to be for the best.

  181. 181
    burnspbesq says:

    @boatboy_srq:

    Yeah, except Benen gets it completely wrong. The D.C. Circuit majority said that the statute wasn’t ambiguous, which is the conclusion it had to reach if it wanted to throw out the IRS regulation, because if the statute is ambiguous, the court is supposed to defer to the agency’s interpretation unless that interpretation is obviously wrong (and it’s hard for an agency’s interpretation of an ambiguous statute to be obviously wrong – that’s what the Fourth Circuit opinion is getting at when it talks about Chevron Stage Two review being “deferential”).

  182. 182
    some guy says:

    @D58826:

    make it 24 days and we are really talking.

  183. 183
    D58826 says:

    From the opinion in the 4th circuit

    What they may not do is rely on our help to deny to millions of Americans desperately – needed health insurance through a tortured, nonsensical construction of a federal statute whose manifest purpose, as revealed by the wholeness and coherence of its text and structure, could not be more clear.

    I rather suspect that if a liberal group went thru Bush’s No child left behind law looking for the ambiguous phrase, it to could be declared unconstitutional by a co-operative liberal judge. In a sane world you just expect a certain amount of ambiguity at the sentence by sentence or word by word level. Of course when you have the kind of money the Kick brothers have, you can start measuring the size of the commas and periods to make sure they conform to some arbitrary standard that is applied only to laws passed by the democrats..

  184. 184
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @moonbat:

    Happy birthday despite the lousy news. Hope the day improves for you!

  185. 185
    StringOnAStick says:

    Wow, the decision from the 4th circuit actually calls health insurance something that is “desperately needed” by millions of Americans. I’m glad to see acceptance of a fact/appeal to the common good by any court, but I think that’s the PTSD from years of the Bush moles being squirreled into all levels of the judicial system. The 4th sounds like it is not (yet) dominated by Federalist Society plants.

  186. 186
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @burnspbesq: Any merit to the suggestion passed along by a lawyer friend of Kevin Drum that what’s being angled for here, besides blowing up the ACA in part, is a rejection by the Supreme Court, of the principle of deference to the agency’s interpretation?

    This would apparently open a Pandora’s box of ways to judicially un-regulate things.

  187. 187
    Emma says:

    @MomSense: I hope so. I really do. But today, I’m just not sure Democrats really understand the game as it’s being played. The leadership seems (with some exceptions) to be a bunch a long-tailed cats in a roomful of rocking chairs. They’re our public face and more than half of them run in the other direction when a Republican says “boo!”. And let’s not even talk about the rank and file. I mean, I’m used to Democrats being all over the place, but this is ridiculous. So, in addition to my realization that I am 10 years from retirement and that even though I have a good retirement package, I will NOT BE ABLE to stay in the US after I retire, it’s just made for one piss-poor day.

  188. 188
    flukebucket says:

    just wanted to jump in right quick and say I love you people. My facebook friends are wondering if I have a law degree. Hahahahahaha!

  189. 189
    Lynn Dee says:

    @Anoniminous:

    If there’s not a circuit split, it might not get there (or the court might not take it). And if the full bench of the D.C. Circuit goes the other way on this particular decision, there might not be a circuit split.

  190. 190
    burnspbesq says:

    @StringOnAStick:

    Speaking of the FS, I’m on their email list, and I got an invite (issued after the DC Circuit opinion but before the Fourth Circuit) to a teleconference at the top of the hour to discuss the DC Circuit opinion. This could be kinda fun.

  191. 191
    Lynn Dee says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Yes, unless the statutory language is found to be ambiguous, you don’t get to legislative history, legislative intent, considering the entire statutory scheme, etc. etc. But there’s a fair amount of discretion in where a court does and doesn’t find ambiguity. Just ask Scalia. He’s notorious for finding ambiguity when and where it suits him.

  192. 192
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @burnspbesq: A friend from law school kept trying to get me to go to FS meeting after law school. When I demurred on ideological grounds, he said the the post-grad Federalist Society wasn’t ideological like the law school chapters. Eventually, I stopped laughing.

  193. 193
    burnspbesq says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Scalia is known to hate Chevron. He would love a shot at it. But whatever the flaws of Chevron (and there are some), as long as we have administrative agencies writing regulations, we need some paradigm for judicial review of agency rule-making.

    I practice tax law. Before the Supremes made it clear (in the Mayo Foundation case in 2011) that Chevron was the way to analyze the validity of IRS regulations, there were at least three conflicting paradigms in play, depending on which Circuit your case was appealable to. That’s no fucking way to run a railroad. And that’s where we would be if Chevron goes away. For all it’s arguable flaws, there is some consensus about how Chevron I supposed to work. And that’s something that ought not to be blithely thrown away.

  194. 194
    Rommie says:

    I just wonder, if one of these makes it to the SC, why would CJ Roberts, after twisting himself into a limbo pretzel to support the ACA in the first place, now decide to toss flaming gasoline on it? And because of semantic nutpicking that would embarrass your typical internet troll?

    There’s no answer that doesn’t make look like a Supreme Tool. That means, unfortunately, there will be no surprise if he does so.

  195. 195
    WaterGirl says:

    @Patricia Kayden: @MomSense:

    Dems should be using poster children like you in political attack ads against the GOP ahead of the midterm elections.

    Momsense, I’m guessing that after your recent experience, this would be a “no go” for you.

  196. 196
    Trollhattan says:

    Meanwhile, on the left coast, Our Jerry keeps it real.

    Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday nominated a Mexican-born Stanford Law School professor to the California Supreme Court, moving to replace one of the high court’s most conservative, retiring members with a Democrat.

    Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar, who will replace retiring Justice Marvin Baxter, is Brown’s second selection to the court of his third term, both appointees coming from the halls of academia. Brown appointed Goodwin Liu, then a UC Berkeley law professor, in 2011.

    Cuéllar would join Liu as the only Democrats on a court dominated by Republican appointees, but its composition is becoming more liberal under Brown. The Democratic governor has one more vacancy to fill, to replace Justice Joyce Kennard, who retired earlier this year.

    http://www.sacbee.com/capitol-.....rylink=cpy

  197. 197
    flukebucket says:

    You guys have probably already seen it but it is still funny enough to see twice

    In fact, Appellants’ reading is not literal; it’s cramped. No case stands for the proposition that literal readings should take place in a vacuum, acontextually, and untethered from other parts of the operative text; indeed, the case law indicates the opposite. … So does common sense: If I ask for pizza from Pizza Hut for lunch but clarify that I would be fine with a pizza from Domino’s, and I then specify that I want ham and pepperoni on my pizza from Pizza Hut, my friend who returns from Domino’s with a ham and pepperoni pizza has still complied with a literal construction of my lunch order. That is this case: Congress specified that Exchanges should be established and run by the states, but the contingency provision permits federal officials to act in place of the state when it fails to establish an Exchange.

    LINK

  198. 198
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Trollhattan: It’s too bad that guy is too old to run for prez again

  199. 199
    MomSense says:

    @WaterGirl:

    Yup. Although my kids were in a bunch of pre and pro ACA ads which still run.

  200. 200
    Shakezula says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Bats won’t eat teabahggists. Sheesh.

  201. 201
    Karen in GA says:

    I’m just waiting for the GOP to purposely infect everyone with plague, because suffering is good and what kind of commie fascist thug are you that you want to live a normal lifespan? Soldiers die for their country, why can’t you? You think you’re better than a soldier? Freedom isn’t free! Etc.

  202. 202
    burnspbesq says:

    @Trollhattan:

    The Cal Supremes are starting to look more like California. Funny how that works when the Republicans don’t have enough power to gum up the works.

    The rest of y’all, pay attention. We out here showin’ you how it’s done.

  203. 203
    Trollhattan says:

    @SatanicPanic:
    Ain’t that the truth! And there are no little Jerrys being groomed, either. He’s the end of an interesting dynasty.

    Confess I don’t know who or what the next generation of dominant California politicians will be like, which is a bit of a concern considering the “old guard” are near life’s end. We might learn a little about the future this fall, but ’16 looms huge.

  204. 204
    Punchy says:

    At this point, I assume that the outcome of all SCOTUS decisions can be predetermined based on what is most advantageous to the GOP’s electoral prospects.

    I hereby declare this Alan’s Corollary, to be on the same grounds as Cleek’s Law. This is about as beautiful and concise a description of RATS + K that I’ve ever seen.

  205. 205
    burnspbesq says:

    @Trollhattan:

    Harris, for sure. Villaraigosa looks like damaged goods now, but there was a time when Jerry was written off. My friend and law school classmate Jackie Lacey (the current LA County DA) would be a great state AG, but I don’t think she’s ambitious enough to go for it. I’m curious to see if Bowen has another run for statewide office in her.

  206. 206
    SatanicPanic says:

    @burnspbesq: We’ve got some decent up and comers here in SD- Todd Gloria and David Alvarez. We just passed a city-wide minimum wage increase

  207. 207
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Shakezula: You mean there are actually some things they won’t eat?

    Damn finicky animals, if you ask me…

    OK, so, admittedly, they don’t want to infect themselves with stoopid prions, but really….

  208. 208
    JPL says:

    @Kay: In GA ads are running against Nunn’s support of Obamacare because it’s possible that 400,000 can lose their insurance.

  209. 209
    burnspbesq says:

    @flukebucket:

    You notice that there is no broccoli on that hypothetical pizza.

  210. 210
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    OT but interesting, from our friends at Noisemax:

    Delta Cancels All Israel Flights

    I guess if Bibi the Babykiller is ready, Delta is not.

  211. 211
    Botsplainer says:

    @Davis X. Machina:

    Any merit to the suggestion passed along by a lawyer friend of Kevin Drum that what’s being angled for here, besides blowing up the ACA in part, is a rejection by the Supreme Court, of the principle of deference to the agency’s interpretation?

    This would apparently open a Pandora’s box of ways to judicially un-regulate things.

    Why do you hate freedom? And ‘Murka? And sweet baby Jesus? And wholesome fruit pies, baked lovingly by sweet old grannies in their quaint homes behind their white picket fences?

    The Mayberry Machiavellis have this. Dont you worry – everything in ‘Murka is going to look awesome – men will be men, women and colored will know their place, good people will be rewarded and God will afflict the wrongdoers with poverty and illness.

  212. 212
    Chris says:

    @Emma:

    Apologies? I’m just flattered the post was remembered.

  213. 213

    Remind me, isn’t the D.C. appeals court the one that has a bunch of vacancies GOPers have blocked?

  214. 214
    burnspbesq says:

    Imagine my surprise: Volokh is all over Halbig, but has not a word to say about King.

  215. 215
    Botsplainer says:

    Now that I think of it and consider all the ramifications of Christian theology (particularly the Calvinist version), God is a total dick.

    It’s like the passive-aggressive ex-spouse you still talk about 30 years after the divorce. “Love me” is the command, without It ever giving you the courtesy of a clear sign of loving you back. And if you doubt that love after the absence of tangible signs provided by It, you go to hell and everlasting torment forever. On top of that, you’re just supposed to suck it up while It provides major tangible benefits to some of the biggest assholes around.

  216. 216
    Trollhattan says:

    @burnspbesq:
    Harris gets a lot of buzz and more importantly, seems better than competent in the job. We’ll see what her next move might be.

    I’m in the anybody-but-Newsom camp and while I do like Bowen am likewise skeptical of her desire for higher office.

    We continue to screw ourselves with term limits, which only limit development of honorable career politicians. Instead we get Tim Donnelly.

  217. 217
    WaterGirl says:

    @MomSense: Not sure which email you are using these days, but I hope you saw my “thank you” for the phone!

    My BIL just had another heart stent put in last week, so I’m especially glad that he shouldn’t ever have to be without a phone now. Thanks again!

  218. 218
    Davis X. Machina says:

    I never hear Jerry Brown’s name come up when the topic of how deleterious political dynasties are arises.

    Funny, that.

  219. 219
    Botsplainer says:

    @Southern Beale:

    Remind me, isn’t the D.C. appeals court the one that has a bunch of vacancies GOPers have blocked?

    Winner winner chicken dinner.

  220. 220
    dmsilev says:

    @Southern Beale: Had. After Reid pulled the trigger on the “nuclear option”, just about the first thing he and the other Senate Democrats did was confirm judges to fill the vacancies on the DC court.

  221. 221
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Botsplainer: But the vacancies have been filled. All eleven seats are occupied with a 7-4 Dem advantage.

  222. 222
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Davis X. Machina: Or John Quincy Adams. RFK. FDR.

  223. 223
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Botsplainer:

    Did you ever see The Rapture, with Mimi Rogers? It takes that exact idea and follows it down to its devastating end. Some people I know turned it off partway through because they thought it was evangelical propaganda, but it ain’t. At all.

  224. 224
  225. 225
    rikyrah says:

    From TOD COMMENTS:

    Bill R.

    July 22, 2014 at 2:16 pm

    – In North Carolina, 357,584 people are paying an average monthly premium of $81 — and repeal would result in an average monthly loss of subsidies/cost increase of $300.

    – In Michigan, 272,539 people are paying an average monthly premium of $97 — and repeal would result in an average monthly loss of subsidies/cost increase of $246.

    – In New Hampshire, 40,262 people are paying an average monthly premium of $100 — and repeal would result in an average monthly loss of subsidies/cost increase of $290.

    – In Louisiana, 101,778 people are paying an average monthly premium of $83 — and repeal would result in an average monthly loss of subsides/cost increase of $314.

    – In Iowa, 29,163 people are paying an average monthly premium of $108 — and repeal would result in an average monthly loss of subsidies/cost increase of $243.

    – In Alaska, 12,890 people are paying an average monthly premium of $94 — and repeal would result in an average monthly loss of subsidies/cost increase of $413.

    – In Georgia, 316,543 people are paying an average monthly premium of $54 — and repeal would result in an average monthly loss of subsidies/cost increase in premiums of $287.

    More reasons why the Halbig decision is not good news for the GOP. It’s an advertisement for the ACA and lets people know about the existence of subsidies. The initial DC decision will not stand, and even the Scotusblog said if it gets to the SCOTUS the ACA will be upheld by the original 5-4 majority. How many GOPers want run on a platform of taking away benefits already received by their own constituents. In Florida alone 750K Floridians get subsidies for their insurance that would be taken away, while states with exchanges continue to get them. This is bad news for GOP candidates, both for the Senate and governorships.

    http://theobamadiary.com/2014/.....ic-genius/

  226. 226
    Lynn Dee says:

    Say, when did Volokh join the Washington Post?

    Anyway, there’s always balkinization.

  227. 227
    MomSense says:

    @WaterGirl:

    Yay! I discovered a boy had left it in his car for a few days before dropping it off at the post office. Glad it got there! Guests just left so now I have to catch up on all the things!

  228. 228
    burnspbesq says:

    @Lynn Dee:

    About the time Ezra left.

    I’ve been trolling Adler anyplace I can find him and don’t have to register, asking him how he likes his pepperoni-and-ham pizza. I’m such a bad puddy-tat.

  229. 229
    Keith G says:

    Contrary to the scare headlines, Ezra Klein explains his view of why the ACA in not in danger from Halbig

    For Halbig to unwind Obamacare the Supreme Court would ultimately have to rule in the plaintiff’s favor. And they’re not going to do that. By the time SCOTUS even could rule on Halbig the law will have been in place for years. The Court simply isn’t going to rip insurance from tens of millions of people due to an uncharitable interpretation of congressional grammar.

    For five unelected, Republican-appointed judges to cause that much disruption and pain would put the Court at the center of national politics in 2015 and beyond. It would be a disaster for the institution. Imagine when the first articles come out recounting the story of someone who lost their insurance due to the SCOTUS ruling and then died because they couldn’t afford their diabetes or cancer treatment. Imagine when every single Democrat who had any hand at all in authoring the law says the Court is completely wrong about what the law meant. Imagine when every single Democrat runs against the Court.

    Chief Justice John Roberts realized that in 2012 when he ruled the individual mandate constitutional. All evidence suggests he didn’t want to rule the mandate constitutional. But he thought it would harm the Court to do otherwise. Deciding for the plaintiffs in Halbig would do far more damage to the law than striking down the mandate and it would do so when the law is actually providing insurance to people. It’s not going to happen.

    An interesting news day, but not an ominous one for citizens like me who live in certain “troubled” states and depend on the federal marketplace for affordable coverage.

  230. 230
    James E. Powell says:

    @Kay:

    The only questions I got on the health care law were from people who HAVE health insurance and were worried it would somehow be taken away by the operation of the law.

    Now where would anyone get an idea like that?

  231. 231
    burnspbesq says:

    The FedSoc conference call is now available as a podcast.

    http://www.fed-soc.org/multimedia/

  232. 232
    James E. Powell says:

    @Keith G:

    Ezra Klein says

    For five unelected, Republican-appointed judges to cause that much disruption and pain would put the Court at the center of national politics in 2015 and beyond. It would be a disaster for the institution.

    Is he too young to know about Bush v Gore? The right-wingers on the supreme court do not care about anything but their side winning. They see what is happening in the country. They know that their side cannot win legitimately. They see themselves as fighting a rearguard action to save the America of 1896.

  233. 233
    dedc79 says:

    The Fourth Circuit was once considered the most conservative court in the country. The fact that it upheld the ACA while the DC Circuit did not, I think speaks more to the rightward drift of the DC Circuit than it does to any newfound moderation in the 4th circuit.

    Note how all the Obama vs. Republican disputes are interelated. The fight over the filibuster was really a fight over Obama’s ability to re-moderate the DC Circuit, which was stocked with right wingers under the W Administration. And that has now become a fight over the continued existence of the ACA.

  234. 234
    Cervantes says:

    @burnspbesq: The original “rocket docket” was Judge Bryan’s in the Eastern District of Virginia, in the ’70s.

  235. 235
    bupalos says:

    I’m trying to figure the politics on this and the only thing I can come up with is that the republicans want to throw some uncertainty into the mix to dissuade more insurers from joining the exchanges right now. There was a big hoo-ha a month back or so about the ACA exceeding expectations and more insurers joining for next year, and I think this might just be a tactical shot of uncertainty to tamp down the successes for ’15 going into an election season.

    That’s all I can figure. There is simply no way the SC is going to instigate the kind of social, commercial, and political dislocation that would come from seriously yanking the subsidies back out of insurers bank accounts and canceling 15MM policies in one fell swoop. Just simply no way.

    I’m going with “create uncertainty” and possibly to try and give a reprise to the theme of incompetence that got them a boost when Healthcare.gov was down.

  236. 236
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @bupalos: You are working too hard here. A couple of conservative hacks had a chance to do their thing, so they did it. The full court will reverse and nothing will change.

  237. 237
    Shakezula says:

    @rikyrah: Yes, watching the NeoCons do a victory dance over this is like watching a cartoon character happily wave a lit stick of dynamite painted to look like a c igar.

    Shhh. Don’t tell them.

  238. 238

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name):

    @Botsplainer: But the vacancies have been filled. All eleven seats are occupied with a 7-4 Dem advantage.

    But the story says it was a 2-1 decision, or rather “a divided three-judge panel.” So either those other justices haven’t been seated yet, or else this didn’t go to the full court. I’m confused.

  239. 239
    gene108 says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    Or John Quincy Adams.

    I do believe, John Q. got a lot of flack for his lineage, when he was President.

    In short, Andrew Jackson was not happy he was not President and John Q managed to get into office and Andy’s supporters did not make life fun for President John Quincy Adams.

  240. 240
    JGabriel says:

    Betty Cracker @ Top:

    Honest to Christ, these bastards will do anything in their power to keep people from having access to decent healthcare. Will the general public finally wake up and see these pricks for the insurance-company bag men and craven political actors that they are? Probably not.

    As far as I can tell, the Exchanges are generally benefiting insurance corps.

    Which, if true, means the GOP pricks who took this to court, and the GOP pricks who ruled for them, aren’t even insurance company bagmen. They’re just sadistic assholes.

    (Assuming they pricks and assholes at the same time. Would that make anal sex? Mixed metaphors lead to strangest vales and hollows.)

  241. 241
    El Caganer says:

    @Southern Beale: This was just a panel. The administration has already requested a hearing by the full court.

  242. 242
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Southern Beale: See this and other similar comments above.

  243. 243

    @El Caganer:

    OH well then why are making such a big deal about this?

    WTF. Fox News is already reporting that the Supreme Court has overturned Obamacare (of course they are). Jesus people are going to get super confused about this.

  244. 244
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Southern Beale:

    OH well then why are making such a big deal about this?

    Which people? The GOP? Because they can. The MSM? Because hysteria draws eyeballs. Chicken Littles on the left? Because that is what they do.

  245. 245
    JGabriel says:

    Betty Cracker @ Top:

    Honest to Christ, these bastards will do anything in their power to keep people from having access to decent healthcare. Will the general public finally wake up and see these pricks for the insurance-company bag men and craven political actors that they are? Probably not.

    As far as I can tell, the Exchanges are generally benefiting insurance corps.

    Which, if true, means the GOP pricks who took this to court, and the GOP pricks who ruled for them, aren’t even insurance company bagmen. They’re just sadistic assholes.

    Assuming they can be pricks and assholes at the same time. Would that them make anal sex? Mixed metaphors lead to strangest vales and hollows.

    (Edited to add: Damn it, I thought requesting deletion would block out the previous, typo-riddled, version of this post.)

  246. 246
  247. 247
    catclub says:

    Another person who thinks this decision, if not overturned, will motivate people who have lost their insurance to do something.
    Kevin Drum

    http://www.motherjones.com/kev.....albig-case

  248. 248
  249. 249
    JGabriel says:

    @Hill Dweller:

    Today’s decision will be vacated when it is reheard en banc.

    And given the radical right-wing extremist activism of the Roberts Court, it may well be reinstated when it goes to SCOTUS.

    I count four definite votes to reinstate it (Alito, Kennedy, Scalia, Thomas) and one probable (Roberts).

  250. 250
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @raven: My great great grandfather was at Courtland, Alabama 150 years ago today. He got to Atlanta a few days later and was there until August 24. He was with the 32d Wisconsin from the forming of the regiment until he mustered out back in WI after the war. Another great great was in the 16th Wisconsin but was invalided out due to illness before he saw combat.

  251. 251
    Mnemosyne says:

    Count me as one of the cynics who thinks the Supreme Court will take this opportunity to shoot PPACA in the knee. Recent history doesn’t lead me to any other possible conclusion.

  252. 252
    James E. Powell says:

    @bupalos:

    I’m trying to figure the politics on this

    It’s simple – It’s about standing up to that [insert racist epithet]. Everything that Obama does must be fought, slandered, opposed, negated, nullified, destroyed. To the right-wingers, nothing else matters.

    This is something that is said so often that it is now in danger of being overlooked. But to the Republicans, the most dangerous thing about Obama isn’t that he is successful, it’s that he is seen and believed to be successful. This undermines one of the pillars of the Republican argument – white supremacy.

    Imagine how different American politics would be if white people no longer considered black males to be scary.

  253. 253
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @JGabriel: There will be no reason for the Supremes to take the case on the full DC Circuit reverses this panel.

  254. 254
    JPL says:

    @raven: I hope Nunn uses this ruling. The ads running against her say that up to 400,000 could lose health care. This ruling if it were allowed to stand could cause 356,000 to lose health care.
    I fear that she is not going to fight for it.

  255. 255
    David in NY says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): I believe my great-grandfather (I’m a generation closer than you and my father actually knew him) was covering Sherman’s rear as he came down, turning back North to cut off a Confederate counter-offensive in the border states. He later got shipped around to the battle of Wilmington, NC, I think that was the clincher featured in the movie Lincoln.

  256. 256
    Cervantes says:

    @MomSense:

    Elections matter for good and ill. If our experience with the Supremes going after contraception and the right to organize combined with this decision on subsidies for health insurance wake people up to just how high the stakes are in the 2014 mid term elections and help Democrats win this time, then maybe this will all turn out to be for the best.

    Remember also that our previous victories, things almost everyone takes for granted now, were hard-fought. Nothing ever came easy. Take the Social Security Act, for instance: it was enacted in 1935 but confusion reigned until at least 1937, because the sociopaths fought us several times, all the way to the Supreme Court. What’s happening now with the PPACA is not unprecedented. If it comes as a surprise it shouldn’t. Social progress is never easy.

    (In case anyone’s curious: Helvering v. Davis; Steward Machine v. Davis; and Carmichael v. Southern Coal & Coke, all 1937.)

  257. 257
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @David in NY: I knew my great grandmother – the daughter of this guy. It is rather odd to think that I was born 100 years after these events took place but someone I knew actually knew a person who was there.

  258. 258
    raven says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): Yea, the last Blue Gray reunion was 5 years I was born in 49.

  259. 259
    raven says:

    @JPL: Nothing on her Facebook.

  260. 260
    SatanicPanic says:

    @Mnemosyne: I couldn’t read the article because my browser is borked, but McMegan’s latest headline is that Obamacare took a “body blow”, so I’m actually pretty sure this will be fine. That and the comments I’m reading from resident lawyers saying it will be overturned by the 3rd when the full court meets so there will be two lower courts in agreement.

  261. 261
    JGabriel says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name):

    There will be no reason for the Supremes to take the case …

    You say that like Republicans need a reason to screw the non-wealthy. I hope you’re right, that’s what should happen. But I’m skeptical, given the decisions from the Roberts Court this term.

    Why do you think SCOTUS won’t take the case, why do you think they’ll act logically or reasonably?

  262. 262
    Cacti says:

    @raven:

    Hey, nice interactive piece by the AJC on the Battle of Atlanta. Today is the 150th anniversary.

    The Battle of Atlanta marked the first defeat of John Bell Hood, the worst confederate general who ever rose to command an army.

    Following his evacuation of Atlanta, he unsuccessfully attempted to attack the Union supply lines and draw Sherman north, but failed to dislodge a Union garrison and was defeated at the Battle of Allatoona Pass. After this failure, he launched an offensive into middle Tennessee.

    This campaign saw his failures in the minor battles of Columbia and Spring Hill, and in major engagements at Franklin and Nashville. The latter two were particularly noteworthy for Hood launching frontal assaults on entrenched Union positions, and in the case of Nashville, where he was outnumbered by around 25,000 men.

    Between July and December 1864, Hood’s Army of Tennessee failed to win a single battle, and saw nearly 20,000 of its 40,000 men killed, wounded, or captured.

    John Bell Hood was a gift to the Union Army after their early struggles to find competent leadership.

  263. 263
    David in NY says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): Yeah, that stuff is interesting. My great-grandfather’s service in the Civil War was legend in the family when I was little, but I don’t think any of the young kids relate to it. Except my boys, perhaps, the last of our name and the sometime carriers, as kids, of the sword of great-grandpa’s and wearers of his hat with a bullet hole in it.

  264. 264
    David in NY says:

    @Cacti: It was Hood my great-grandpa was chasing, I’m pretty sure.

    And I think his biggest battle was at Franklin.

  265. 265
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @JGabriel: I think the Court will leave it alone because Roberts will vote like he did in the first ACA case to protect his Court’s legacy. A decision that effectively changes the rules of statutory interpretation would be stunningly radical (and not good for businesses). Roberts is a far right ideologue, but he is smart and he is not a judicial radical. Given that, it is better for conservatives to leave the case where it will be, with two Circuits effectively laughing the argument out of court, rather than suffering a high profile defeat.

  266. 266
    vhh says:

    @rikyrah: When will people out there figure out that this decision, if left in place, amounts to a TAX INCREASE on people otherwise eligible for the subsidies. I thought the GOP was against TAX INCREASES above all.

  267. 267
    Raven says:

    @David in NY: My ancestor was killed in Vaughn’s Brigade, probably in the 3:30 attack on Bald Hill.

  268. 268
    burnspbesq says:

    @vhh:

    I thought the GOP was against TAX INCREASES above all.

    Tax increase on high-income individuals, corporations, or income from capital? Doubleplusungood.

    Tax increase on working people, as collateral damage for fucking Obama? Bring it on.

  269. 269
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @catclub: And when the story inevitably gets spun as “Obamacare took away your ACA!” will people believe it?

  270. 270
    WaterGirl says:

    @JPL: Could you explain a bit of background here? This is the second comment today that hasn’t made sense to me. Isn’t Nunn in favor of Obamacare?

  271. 271
    Cervantes says:

    @WaterGirl: I think the idea is this: (1) Ads running against Nunn blame Obamacare for people losing their insurance; so (2) a pro-Nunn ad could explain that this decision, and Republicans in general, are the ones threatening people’s access to affordable health insurance.

  272. 272
    raven says:

    @Cervantes: Yea but she’s being gutless on ACA.

  273. 273
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cervantes: Thanks! #1 is the missing link – I just couldn’t figure out how Obamacare would be causing people to lose their insurance. Surely it’s increasing insurance?

    @raven: Well, that’s disappointing.

  274. 274
    raven says:

    @WaterGirl:

    NUNN: So, at the time that the Affordable Health Care Act was passed, I was working for Points of Light [her nonprofit organization]. So I think it’s hard to look back, to go back retrospectively.
    But when I look at it, I think of: What do we need to do going forward? I think, you know, I come at it from the perspective of someone who made payroll, who saw rising health care premiums, who believes that we actually need to work together, to make changes where it’s not working and to improve the things that already are working. So I think we need to add a more affordable tier of insurance for individuals and families who have high premiums.
    I think we need to add a tax credit for small businesses. And I also think we need to repeal the cuts to rural hospitals as a result of our state not expanding Medicaid. At the time time I don’t think we need to go backwards. We need to make sure that people who have pre-existing conditions have access to health care. That people who now have children that are under age 26 because of it — I talked to a constituent not long ago who said I’m so grateful, I sleep better every night because my three sons, age 20 to 26, can be covered by my insurance. So I think we need to move forward and go forward to insure that everyone has quality health care.
    HUNT: But you’re not sure if you would have voted yes or no?
    NUNN: When I look back at what they were doing when this was passed, I think, I wish that we had more people who had tried to architect a bipartisan legislation. And who had worked together across the aisle.

  275. 275
    D58826 says:

    OT but GREAT fsm listening to tweetie and Chuck Schumer on Israel. Poor Israel they are so misunderstood and put upon. Israel just wants to live in peace and Hamas should just accept that they are a terrorist organization and the people in Gaza deserve to live in an open air prison. Breitbart has an article by Ben Stein about media anti-Semitism. Which was obvious on Tweetie tonight after all look at the terrible things the Palestinian guest on tweetie had to say about Israel. What you missed the Palestinian?, Must have been when you sneezed.

  276. 276
    Cervantes says:

    @raven:

    Yea but she’s being gutless on ACA.

    You may be right about that; I assume you know more about her campaign than I do. I was just trying to answer someone’s question about what ads could be made. Whether Nunn will make them or not I haven’t the faintest.

    @WaterGirl:

    Thanks! #1 is the missing link – I just couldn’t figure out how Obamacare would be causing people to lose their insurance. Surely it’s increasing insurance?

    The notion that Obamacare has caused people to lose their insurance is based on the decision by some insurers to (comply with the law and partly for that reason) withdraw certain policies from the market. Remember that whole kerfuffle? (“Obama said that if I liked my insurance I could keep it! He lied!”)

  277. 277
    WaterGirl says:

    @raven: That’s a disappointingly slippery non-response. She’s obviously for it, she should just own it.

  278. 278
    Cervantes says:

    @raven: So she would not vote to repeal it; she likes and is willing to defend some of what it does; but she can’t say that she would have voted for it because she’s not sure the process was sufficiently “bi-partisan”?

    Is that about the size of it?

  279. 279
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cervantes: Ah. So 400k people had to give up their crappy insurance, and get something better for probably the same money or less money? Poor them!

  280. 280
    Cervantes says:

    @WaterGirl: Right, that’s the one.

  281. 281
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cervantes: Seems to me that someone gave Nunn a list of buzzwords that poll well, and she tried to get them all into her response.

    Raven, I see why you said what you said!

  282. 282
    James E. Powell says:

    @raven:

    Yea but she’s being gutless on ACA.

    What Nunn is doing has nothing to do with ACA specifically or healthcare/health insurance generally. She has to be distant from ACA because “Obamacare” is code for “that ni-clang!” and she is running in a confederate state.

  283. 283
    Cervantes says:

    @WaterGirl:

    Seems to me that someone gave Nunn a list of buzzwords that poll well, and she tried to get them all into her response.

    Maybe. And if her … caution … brings her more votes in November than it pushes away, then it will have been a good strategy. Whereas if it repels voters or fails to excite enough of them, then she will come to regret it. I hope she knows what she’s doing.

    Does she, in fact, know what she’s doing? She has led Kingston in 8 of the last 11 polls (that I’ve seen). Her lead is small but it does seem reliable (the probability that it’s real is more than 80%, at the moment). If Kingston does win today’s primary, that would seem to put Nunn in a good place.

    But nothing is certain. Right now, what I want is for her to win that seat, in today’s Georgia, almost whatever it takes.

  284. 284
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cervantes:

    But nothing is certain. Right now, what I want is for her to win that seat, in today’s Georgia, almost whatever it takes.

    Agree. The “just say what you think, dammit” part of me wants them all to answer the damn questions. But yeah, I just want to get some democrats elected.

    Which democrats? All of them, Katie.

  285. 285
    Howard Beale IV says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: OK-now how do you make that happen? These eejets are like herpes-you really didn’t want ’em, you got screwed when you got ’em, and if if you could get rid of it you would….

    But you can’t-short of allowing those states to become their own brand-spanking new country.

  286. 286
    Cervantes says:

    @WaterGirl: Kingston and Perdue are neck-and-neck at the moment.

    But in Georgia’s 11th District, Barry Loudermilk appears to be wiping the floor with Bob Barr — a consummation devoutly to be wished. (This is also a Republican primary; I just happen to have a long-standing and intense dislike of Barr.)

  287. 287
    Lynn Dee says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Lol. Any response?

  288. 288
    JGabriel says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name):

    I think the Court will leave it alone because Roberts will vote like he did in the first ACA case to protect his Court’s legacy. A decision that effectively changes the rules of statutory interpretation would be stunningly radical (and not good for businesses). Roberts is a far right ideologue, but he is smart and he is not a judicial radical.

    Thanks for getting back to me on this. As I said above, I hope you’re right. I made the same allowance above for Roberts to possibly sidestep this one. On the other hand, SCOTUS did take the Hobby Lobby case and ruled for them, in a case which I would have thought was a clear failure on the merits for HL.

    So color me worried.

  289. 289
    dianne says:

    If this decision guts the ACA entirely, doesn’t this mean that all the good middle class voters also lose the pre-exisiting condition waiver and kids 22-26 staying on their parent’s health care also go away? I can see why the selfish Repubs are against the ACA since many don’t benefit from the subsidies but there are a few things that they get in addition. The only way to sway a Republican is to show that they may lose a few benefits
    they like, although they vote against themselves all the time. This may at least make the differences between the parties a little more stark.

  290. 290
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    Y’know…. it’s shit like this that makes me follow politics less, lately. I can’t help but get angry.

    The Republican Party is actively at war with the United States of America. And people seem to be fucking okay with this.

Comments are closed.