Philadelphia Inquirer Reviews Unprecedented

January 10th, 2014

The Philadelphia Inquirer offers this review of Unprecedented, as well as a discussion of my recent talk at the Philadelphia Lawyer’s Federalist Society Chapter (video here).¬†Here is the intro:

Josh Blackman is a young, conservative law professor who has been getting plenty of attention for his history of the legal fight over Obamacare.

Legal experts across the spectrum, including Harvard University’s Lawrence Tribe and Georgetown University Law Center’s Randy Barnett, a leading libertarian, have heaped praise on Blackman’s book,¬†Unprecedented: The Constitutional Challenge to Obamacare.

It provides a granular account of how the legal – and political – battle over the Affordable Care Act was joined, and how so much about the fight departed from past pattern.

So when Blackman walked to the lectern Monday in a conference room on the 26th floor of an office tower near Logan Square to address the city’s chapter of the conservative Federalist Society, the audience seemed ready to hang on every word.

But for conservatives, it wasn’t a happy talk. And maybe not for liberals, either.

All of 29 years old, Blackman – who did his undergraduate work at Pennsylvania State University, and clerked for U.S. District Judge Kim R. Gibson in Johnstown after graduation from George Mason University Law School – is a bit of a legal polymath. He can, with seeming ease, assimilate disparate streams of legal analyses, facts, political events, and government policy in service of his arguments.

I really enjoyed working with the author of the piece, Chris Mondics. He was a very careful journalist who took the time to make sure he got the law right.