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Social Media Rundown: Three Days At The Supreme Court

This week, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the 2010 health law, in what court watchers are calling the biggest case at the high court in decades. Here’s a rundown from the social media-sphere of what happened in those three days.

Day 1: Can We Even Argue About The Health Care Law?
Mon., March 26

The first day began with an examination of whether the Anti-Injunction Act, which bars lawsuits seeking to prevent a tax, would prevent a review of the health law’s individual mandate at this time. This would push the consideration of the health law challenges to 2015, when the first penalties would be imposed.


Day 2: The Individual Mandate And Broccoli
Tues., March 27

The second day homed in on the health law’s individual mandate, the requirement that nearly everyone get health insurance coverage or pay a fine. Justice Antonin Scalia referenced the “broccoli argument,” concerning the government’s role in the marketplace.

Justice Anthony Kennedy, considered a crucial swing vote, told Solicitor General Donald Verrilli that the government telling an individual to purchase health insurance “changes the relationship of the federal government to the individual in a very fundamental way.”

KHN contributor Stuart Taylor noted that Justice Kennedy and Chief Justice John Roberts were particularly tough on Solicitor General Verrilli.


Day 3: Severability And Medicaid Expansion
Weds., March 28

Day three arguments focused on two areas: severability of the individual mandate from the rest of the law and Medicaid expansion.


Day 4: The Aftermath
Thurs., March 29

A decision by the Supreme Court is expected in June. In the meantime, law and policy experts look at how the court’s decision could impact the upcoming presidential election, the budget deficit and health care for those who currently lack insurance coverage.

KHN wraps up the week’s events with a live webcast featuring NPR’s Julie Rovner, SCOTUSblog’s Tom Goldstein, KHN contributor Stuart Taylor and KHN’s Mary Agnes Carey.