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10 Polemics from the Supreme Court Decision

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, July 2, 2012

4. "Crabbed reading"
In Ginsburg's dissent of Roberts' refusal to accept the power of the individual mandate under the Commerce Clause, Ginsburg implied that her fellow Justice is ill-tempered and surly. "The Chief Justice's crabbed reading of the Commerce Clause harkens back to the era in which the Court routinely thwarted Congress' efforts to regulate the national economy in the interest of those who labor to sustain it."

She also wrote that Roberts "rigid reading of the Clause makes scant sense and is stunningly retrogressive."

 5. "Free ride"
Ginsburg argued in her dissent that the uninsured do indeed use healthcare, which has an inarguable impact on the insured, with costs of more than $100 billion in healthcare services—nearly 5% of the national total in 2009—passed on to other payers. "As economists would describe what happens, the uninsured 'free ride' on those who pay for health insurance."

She added, "By requiring the healthy uninsured to obtain insurance or pay a penalty structured as a tax, the minimum coverage provision ends the free ride these individuals currently enjoy."

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2 comments on "10 Polemics from the Supreme Court Decision"


Stuart Showalter (7/2/2012 at 10:50 AM)
The [INVALID] marks in the previous comment were meant to be dashes.

Stuart Showalter (7/2/2012 at 10:24 AM)
Cheryl's article says, "Ginsberg implied that her fellow Justice is ill-tempered and surly." When I read the opinion I wasn't sure if that was the meaning she intended for the word crabbed or whether she might have meant "complicated and difficult to understand." Or do you suppose she was being clever and leaving the interpretation to the reader? I would like to think that the justices are not ill-tempered and surly [INVALID] Scalia to the contrary notwithstanding [INVALID] but I'm not sure.