Persuing SCOTUSBlog (be patient, it may not load immediately today) as well as veteran Courtwatchers Dahlia Lithwick and Jeffrey Toobin, it looks like opinions on oral argument range between "the individual mandate is totally hosed" and "there's some small chance that the mandate will survive".
Let's just say there are days I've felt better about the world.
I'm not really sure why people thought this would be a cakewalk -- 7-2 or 6-3 rulings -- it has been pretty clear to me that it would be 5-4, like most of the contentious decisions that have come down over the last 20 years. Judges are people, and most of them have pretty clear political track records, their stated jurisprudence be damned.
I had thought that it would hinge, as it so often does, on Kennedy, the perennial swing voter. But having read the transcrips, I was surprised to see that Roberts was accepting of the arguments made by the Government.
That puts me in the odd position of feeling better about this than most - the Government only needs to peel one vote to win, and I see two chances where I once saw only one.
This is important. Much more than ACA is on the line here.
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