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Sarah Palin will pry your Klondike bar from your cold dead fingers.

calendar   Thursday - June 25, 2015

Welcome To Wonderland

SCOTUS Rolls Over, Plays Dead For Her Master

The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the nationwide tax subsidies underpinning President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, rejecting a major challenge to the landmark law in a ruling that preserves health insurance for millions of Americans.

The justices said in a 6-3 ruling that the subsidies that 8.7 million people currently receive to make insurance affordable do not depend on where they live, as opponents contended.

The outcome was the second major victory for Obama in politically charged Supreme Court tests of his most significant domestic achievement. And it came the same day the court gave him an unexpected victory by preserving a key tool the administration uses to fight housing bias.

Obama greeted news of the decision by declaring the health care law “is here to stay.” He said the law is no longer about politics, but the benefits millions of people are receiving.

Declining to concede, House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio said Republicans, who have voted more than 50 times to undo the law, will “continue our efforts to repeal the law and replace it with patient-centered solutions that meet the needs of seniors, small business owners, and middle-class families.”

At the court, Chief Justice John Roberts again voted with his liberal colleagues in support of the law. Roberts also was the key vote to uphold it in 2012. Justice Anthony Kennedy, a dissenter in 2012, was part of the majority on Thursday.

Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them,” Roberts declared in the majority opinion.

Limiting the subsidies only to individuals in states with their own exchanges could well push insurance markets in the other states “into a death spiral,” Roberts wrote.

Justice Antonin Scalia, in a dissent he summarized from the bench, strongly disagreed. “We should start calling this law SCOTUScare,” he said, using an acronym for the Supreme Court and suggesting his colleagues’ ownership by virtue of their twice stepping in to save the law from what he considered worthy challenges.

His comment drew a smile from Roberts, his seatmate and the object of Scala’s ire.

Scalia said that Roberts’ 2012 decision that upheld the law and his opinion on Thursday “will publish forever the discouraging truth that the Supreme Court of the United States favors some laws over others, and is prepared to do whatever it takes to uphold and assist its favorites.”

Boy howdy, nothing like taking a quote out of context. Changes everything, nyet? How about the whole Roberts quote this time?

“Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them,” Roberts wrote in the majority opinion. “If at all possible, we must interpret the Act in a way that is consistent with the former, and avoids the latter.”

Roberts continued, “In this instance, the context and structure of the Act compel us to depart from what would otherwise be the most natural reading of the pertinent statutory phrase.

In other words, the law means what I say it means, NOT WHAT IS ACTUALLY WRITTEN.  Um, gosh, does that sound a wee bit familiar??
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In a dissent he summarized from the bench, Justice Antonin Scalia said, “We should start calling this law SCOTUScare.” Using the acronym for the Supreme Court, Scalia said his colleagues have twice stepped in to save the law from what Scalia considered worthy challenges.

“The Court holds that when the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act says ‘Exchange established by the State’ it means ‘Exchange established by the State or the Federal Government.’ That is of course quite absurd, and the Court’s 21 pages of explanation make it no less so,” Scalia wrote.

Scalia added, “Words no longer have meaning if an Exchange that is not established by a State is ‘established by the State.’ It is hard to come up with a clearer way to limit tax credits to state Exchanges than to use the words ‘established by the State.’ And it is hard to come up with a reason to include the words ‘by the State’ other than the purpose of limiting credits to state Exchanges.”

Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas joined the dissent, as they did in 2012.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton commented on Twitter following the ruling.

“Yes! SCOTUS affirms what we know is true in our hearts & under the law: Health insurance should be affordable & available to all,” she tweeted.

So there you have it. The law is what we say it is, without regard to how it was written, because we so fervently believe it to be true. Feelings trump every kind of fact, every aspect of reality, including the written word of law. From the very top on down.

Welcome to Wonderland.

PS - and you’re not allowed to think about how this kind of squishy thinking can now be applied to any other annoying law, like the Constitution. 


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 06/25/2015 at 05:20 PM   
Filed Under: • Health-MedicineJudges-Courts-Lawyers •  
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