Audio of the Handdown of the Opinion in NFIB v. Sebelius

October 2nd, 2012

I have been waiting for this since June 28, 2012. Oyez has the audio here.

I will wait till the transcripts come out to blog about this in depth, but wow, listening to the Chief’s delivery is astounding.

And these segments from Justice Kennedy’s delivery are quite powerful (my best efforts to transcribe what AMK said):

Despite the fact that Congress exceeded its power to regulate interstate commerce . .  . the majority of the court holds, that the individual mandate, if it is “recast” as a tax, is constitutional . . . five members pivot and hold that the individual mandate is a tax . . . the majority rewrote the statute

In the name of restraint, the Court overreaches.

“Structure means liberty.”

And from the conclusion of Justice Ginsburg’s delivery:

“In the end The Affordable Care Act surivives largely unscathed. But the Court’s commerce and spending clause jurisprudence has been set awry. My expectations are that the setbacks will be temporary blips and not permanet obstructions.”

This cuts both ways. On the one hand, RBG confirms that there are 5 votes for the Court’s commerce clause jurisprudence. But then she suggests that it will be temporary, and things will go back to normal for the next case.

I have way too much work to do this week so I can’t go through all of it now.

Roberts delivery was 20 minutes, Kennedy spoke for 10 minutes, and Ginsburg spoke for 20 minutes. That is a full 50 minutes! No wonder there was such chaos during the handdown.