The fourth Monday in June is the usual announcement day for pending U.S. Supreme Court Decisions. There are three really big cases pending decisions that could have significant impact on the November election as well as on federal and state law-making for a long time to come.
One really big case concerns the Affordable Care Act, also known as national health care reform, or “Obama Care”. The main focus of this case is the constitutionality of “individual mandate” which requires everyone who does not have health insurance to purchase health insurance or pay a fine. Additionally, there is concern (hope) that if the individual mandate is struck down by the court that the rest of the law may be upheld (stuck down also), depending upon your point of view.
Another really big case is the federal government’s challenge to the constitutionality of Arizona’s state immigration enforcement law. Does any state have the right to take upon itself the administration of any federal responsibility, without the consent of the federal government to do so? Or, is one immigration policy sufficient, versus, say, fifty one different immigration policies (one federal policy plus fifty different state laws addressing this subject)?
The third really big case is a challenge to a legacy Montana law that outlawed corporate spending for advertising in political campaigns. The Supreme Court previously ruled (in 2010), in the case known as Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission, that a key provision of the McCain-Feingold Act, known as the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act, which barred corporate and union spending on electioneering communications, was unconstitutional. In other words, the court affirmed its prior rulings that corporations (and unions) are people, for the purposes of free speech rights. “Super PACs were born out of the Citizens United decision.
There are other cases of much less significance, or sweep in the potential impact.
How do you feel about these cases, which could re-write both history and civics textbooks?