UNO political scientist discusses significance of Supreme Court hearing on health care law

Mar 28, 2012

The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule by the end of June on President Obama’s health care overhaul law.

Justices heard three days of arguments from the U.S. Solicitor General and from Attorneys General who sued to have the health care law thrown out. 26 states, including Nebraska, are part of the lawsuit.

Carson Holloway, an associate professor of political science at UNO, says it’s one of the most significant cases the Supreme Court has ever heard. He says it’s hard to tell how Justices will rule on the matter. “It’s hard to draw firm conclusions from the questions they ask, because they’re trying to clarify the issues for themselves and for their colleagues, and it’s not clear that if they press someone they mean they disagree with them.”

Holloway says the fate of the health care law could come down to Justice Anthony Kennedy, who is usually a swing vote.

He says while Justices could dismiss the individual mandate part of the law and keep the rest, he doesn’t think that will happen.