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A year ago I wrote that SCOTUS would decide on whether or not they would hear California’s Proposition 8 by the end of the term in June 2012.  That turned out be totally wrong, which doesn’t make any sense to me since they managed to squeeze in a whole ruling on Obamacare.

Via Prop 8 Trial Tracker:

Oral argument in the Ninth Circuit challenge to Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act was scheduled for September 10. The Justice Department petitioned the Supreme Court for certiorari, to review the case, and the Court won’t decide whether to take the case until September 24 or later. Now the Ninth Circuit has canceled oral argument in the case pending the Supreme Court conference and subsequent decision to hear the case or not.

That’s for DOMA; no word on Prop 8 yet. I also don’t understand why CA same-sex marriages are on hold since it makes more sense for the Ninth Circuit’s ruling to be upheld in the meantime.

A troll on Facebook said yesterday that “gay marriage was so 2007.”  Yanno, cause civil right are so passé.

Categories: Politics or: the art of looking for trouble, Uncategorized Tags: california, civil right, gay marriage, ninth circuit, Prop 8, proposition 8, same-sex marriage, SCOTUS, supreme court

OK, I was wrong. Chief Justice Roberts swung to the left and Kennedy did not. Amazing. I’ll have to scrutinize Roberts’s voting record more closely before passing him off as ideologically pure. Here’s the full ruling if you have a lot of free time. He actually upheld the mandate under the federal government’s Tax Power and not the Commerce Clause, while Ginsberg would have upheld it under both. Interesting, certainly a blow to conservatives.

Being uninsured myself, I have mixed opinions about the 2014 individual mandate, but what is known from models like Mass. is that it will reduce overall health care spending and create more competitive private insurance plans.

For a while this morning, Cable News was reporting that the mandate was struck down before they got “conflicting information.”

This is what happens when they don’t let in cameras.

What the Medicaid part of the ruling means according to SCOTUSblog:

The Court’s decision on the constitutionality of the Medicaid expansion is divided and complicated. The bottom line is that: (1) Congress acted constitutionally in offering states funds to expand coverage to millions of new individuals; (2) So states can agree to expand coverage in exchange for those new funds; (3) If the state accepts the expansion funds, it must obey by the new rules and expand coverage; (4) but a state can refuse to participate in the expansion without losing all of its Medicaid funds; instead the state will have the option of continue the its current, unexpanded plan as is.

Senator Harry Reid ‏@SenatorReid

Now that this matter is settled, I hope we can work together to create jobs and secure this country’s economic future

Categories: Economics, Politics or: the art of looking for trouble Tags: ACA, health care bill, individual mandate, Justice Kennedy, Justice Roberts, medicaid, obamacare, SCOTUS, supreme court

[6/28 Edit:  Those 19 constitutional scholars were wrong about the Court.  Reax on my blog “Holy Shit Mandate” here.]

Sarah Kliff of Ezra Klein’s Wonkblog does some of the tightest health care news blogging I’ve ever seen.

Kliff on the SCOTUS individual mandate decision:

Bloomberg surveyed 21 top constitutional scholars and found that, while 19 think the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act ought to be upheld on the basis of legal precedent, just eight think the Supreme Court will actually do so.

Sigh. Yup, pretty much. Kennedy is supposed to be the swing Judge, the new Sandra Day O’Connor, but he really does bend conservative. It’ll probably turn out to be a 5-4 ruling against the mandate. There’s hope though, according to Kliff.

The other thing they are ruling on, but people are talking about less, is the proposed Medicaid expansions. States are arguing that it puts excessive burden on them and suing. Suck it, Red states. Eat your own Christian values, and help your poor people have basic human dignity.

I think, hopefully, a lot of the bill should remain intact. Otherwise everyone with a college kid under 26 is going to be pissed.

Categories: Politics or: the art of looking for trouble Tags: health care bill, individual mandate, Justice Kennedy, medicaid, obamacare, Sarah Kliff, SCOTUS, supreme court

As someone who has has their habeas corpus rights violated in the past, this news really depresses me.

LA Times:

Four years ago, the Supreme Court did its duty as a guardian of the Constitution by ruling that Congress couldn’t prevent inmates at Guantanamo Bay from filing petitions for habeas corpus, a venerable feature of Anglo-American law that allows prisoners to challenge their confinement in court. This week, the justices walked away from that responsibility by refusing to review lower court rulings that have narrowed the protections of its 2008 decision to the vanishing point.

Democracy Now! interviews two guests on the matter:  Shayana Kadidal, senior managing attorney of the Guantánamo Global Justice Initiative at the Center for Constitutional Rights, and investigative journalist Andy Worthington, who reports that of the 169 prisoners still held, over half — 87 in total — were cleared for release by President Obama’s Guantánamo Review Task Force.

Categories: Politics or: the art of looking for trouble Tags: Democracy Now, enemy combatants, Guantanamo Bay, habeas corpus, SCOTUS, supreme court

I think this is one of the best pieces of journalism I have ever done.  I learned so much about the District and Ninth Circuit courts in the writing process.  Namely I learned that Schwarzenegger didn’t show up to Court even though his name was in the lawsuit, and that justice is very very slow.

Prop Hate will fall one day, though.  If you like the article there’s a button on the article’s page to “like” it on facebook.

Read more at Suite101: Same-Sex Marriage, CA’s Prop. 8 Court Battle History and Standing Suite101.com http://www.suite101.com/content/same-sex-marriage-cas-prop-8-court-battle-history-and-standing-a378638#ixzz1ROI9Ydj

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: california law, gay rights, Perry v. Schwarzenegger, Prop 8, proposition 8, same-sex marriage, Strauss v. Horton, supreme court

I haven’t been following it too closely, (who really watches hearings from beginning to end) but there are a couple things I’d like to comment on about Elena Kagan.

  1. A bit dated, but softball photo.  Really media?  Really?
  2. Yoinked from wiki (cited Campus Progress):  “As dean, Kagan supported a lawsuit intended to overturn the Solomon Amendment so military recruiters might be banned from the grounds of schools like Harvard. When a federal appeals court ruled the Pentagon could not withhold funds, she banned the military from Harvard’s campus once again. The case was challenged in the Supreme Court, which ruled the military could indeed require schools to allow recruiters if they wanted to receive federal money. Kagan, though she allowed the military back, simultaneously urged students to demonstrate against Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Whoo!  Kagan’s got balls.  I support.
  3. Denying prisoners of war habeas corpus?  Not cool.  But she might have a point that they AREN’T protected by current law.  She might secretly support reform to make laws, though.  She is a lib and we all know.

I do think she’s a pretty solid pick for the new SCOTUS Justice.  I think her obfuscating from answers about her personal views is a strength in terms of the position.  But it’s still not satisfying my curiosity. 😛

Categories: Politics or: the art of looking for trouble Tags: DADT, Elena Kagan, habeas corpus, Harvard, nomination, SCOTUS, supreme court