Three quick items on the Supreme Court’s decision to (mostly) uphold the Affordable Care Act:
1. I was watching CNN while waiting for the ruling in the mistaken belief that the other cable nets would only be worse. I must admit, listening to Wolf Blitzer and John King trying to backtrack from their whopper made for riveting television. Will heads roll? Should they? People make mistakes, but good grief.
2. Wish I could remember who wrote this, but yesterday I read an analysis that attempted to prove Justice Anthony Kennedy would vote against the individual mandate. So far, so good. But the writer went on to argue that since it was unimaginable Chief Justice John Roberts would come out on Kennedy’s left, that was the end of Obamacare. Personally, I think Roberts looked into the abyss and saw there was no bottom.
3. I thought this was a good time to recycle what I wrote for the Guardian after the ACA was approved in 2010. The law isn’t perfect, but it’s an enormous improvement over the status quo. It was — and is — a BFD.
Image via JimRomenesko.com.
Two must-see features following Wednesday’s decision by a federal judge to overturn the California ban on same-sex marriage.
First, Dahlia Lithwick of Slate has a sharp analysis of how U.S. District Court Judge Vaughn Walker crafted his decision by quoting fulsomely from past decisions written by Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy (via @GratuitousV). Noting that Kennedy would surely be the pivotal vote if and when gay marriage comes before the court, Lithwick writes:
Any way you look at it, today’s decision was written for a court of one — Kennedy — the man who has written most eloquently about dignity and freedom and the right to determine one’s own humanity. The real triumph of Perry v. Schwarzenegger may be that it talks in the very loftiest terms about matters rooted in logic, science, money, social psychology, and fact.
Second, Boston.com’s Big Picture posted a terrific series of photos showing gay and lesbian couples getting married. The timing was exquisite: the series was posted a few hours before Judge Walker issued his ruling. Have a look.
I hope Wednesday marks the beginning of the end for marriage discrimination in America, but we all know there’s a long way to go. Among other things, Walker’s opinion was based on the 14th Amendment’s 142-year-old guarantees of equal protection and due process — and the Republican Party, sealing itself ever deeper inside its anti-reality cocoon, is now questioning whether the 14th Amendment should be modified.
Yes, the intent is to find new ways to torment the children of illegal immigrants. But once the amendment is open for discussion, one awful idea tends to lead to another.
Still, Wednesday was a great day, even if it’s too early to celebrate.
Photo via WikiMedia Commons.