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   Does A Peevish Roberts Dissent Say Anything About Obamacare

NEWS INFORMATION

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Parent

News Date

6/5/2012 9:00 am

Author

Daniel Fisher, Forbes Staff

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Category

Speculative

Database Record

Entered 6/5/2012, Updated 6/5/2012

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I’m throwing this one out as pure speculation: Does the uncharacteristically peevish dissent by Chief Justice John Roberts in a decision handed down yesterday say anything about the behind-the-scenes battle at the Supreme Court over Obamacare? Roberts sounded almost Scaliaesque in his dissent from the majority in Armour vs. City of Indianapolis, an otherwise unremarkable decase about sewer taxes. Splitting from a majority that included swing Justice Anthony Kennedy (and, curiously, Clarence Thomas) Roberts attacked his fellow justices for refusing to apply the Equal Protection Act to homeowners who paid 10 to 30 times as much in taxes as their neighbors. “Every generation or so a case comes along when this Court needs to say enough is enough, if the Equal Protection Clause is to retain any force in this context,” Roberts wrote. Substitute “Equal Protection Clause” for “Commerce Clause” and the chief justice’s argument starts to sound an awful lot like the one made by people who want the healthcare reform act struck down. The high court is expected to deliver its decision on that case later this month.


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