“The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear a challenge to the 2010 health care overhaul law, President Obama’s signature legislative achievement, setting the stage for oral arguments by March and a decision in late June as the 2012 presidential campaign enters its crucial final months… The court scheduled five and a half hours of arguments instead of the usual one, a testament to the importance of the case, and the court’s ruling a few months later will present opportunities and challenges for the presidential contenders as well as for candidates in the battle for control of Congress.”

“Before the ink was dry on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare), the wheels started to fall off. Lawsuits were immediately filed challenging the constitutionality of the individual mandate, small businesses wanted the burdensome 1099 requirement immediately repealed, and coalitions were formed to overturn other costly provisions of the law…Thankfully the Supreme Court has decided to take up our case, among others, challenging the individual mandate and whether or not it is ‘severable’ from the rest of the law.”

“Lawyers on both sides of the lawsuits over President Obama’s healthcare law were caught off guard Monday when the Supreme Court said it would debate whether the law’s Medicaid expansion is constitutional. The high court was widely expected to take up the law’s individual mandate, and to take the case filed by 26 states and the National Federation of Independent Business. But the court’s decision to also hear the states’ Medicaid challenge came as a surprise to the healthcare law’s critics as well as its supporters.”

“By all means, let’s pursue every avenue and let us make sure that our laws are in their proper relation to the Constitution. But the core case against Obamacare must be a sustained political case made on policy grounds, and the means to undo the law as a whole and pursue real reform will present themselves not next summer when the Court rules but next fall when the public does. Let us not forget it, and not lose our focus and resolve.”

“What the Supreme Court will focus on, what it will decide, and whether or not a portion of the law can be severed from the act is open to debate. Importantly, the Supreme Court will be able to decide which lower court decisions to review. They are not required to look at all of the cases or every issue in each case. Central questions exist regarding standing, the individual mandate, the employer mandate and state Medicaid expansion. Furthermore, if the individual mandate is deemed unconstitutional, will it render the entire health reform law void- or can the mandate simply be severed from the law?”

“The Supreme Court could decide Nov. 10 whether it will review President Barack Obama’s health care reform law this term. The Obama administration and five opponents of the law are asking the court to review whether the law’s requirement that all Americans buy insurance is constitutional. Five of the six pending requests have been sent to the justices ahead of the November conference, at which the justices will decide which cases it will accept.”

“This afternoon, the District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania became the latest court to strike down the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (Obamacare) individual mandate, holding that ‘[t]he power to regulate interstate commerce does not subsume the power to dictate a lifetime financial commitment to health insurance coverage.’ The challenge was brought by a Barbara Goudy-Bachman and Gregory Bachman, who are both self-employed and have chosen to drop their health insurance because it exceeded their monthly mortgage payments. Instead, Bachmans opted to pay for health care out of pocket. The Administration, unless it wants to concede that Obamacare is unconstitutional, will have to appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.”

“The latest rulings focused only on judicial procedure and not on the merits of the law, leaving a split decision between the Sixth and Eleventh circuits on the actual constitutionality of the individual mandate. (The Sixth Circuit in Michigan said the individual mandate can stand because it is important to the overall working of the law. The Eleventh Circuit — in which 26 states are challenging the law – disagreed and said the individual mandate is not only unconstitutional but ‘is breathtaking in its expansive scope.’)”

“This afternoon, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ruled that the individual mandate in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), more commonly known as Obamacare, is unconstitutional. The carefully worded and thorough (over 300 page) set of opinions may be a bit mind-numbing for the uninitiated, but they are a joy to read for those of us who think the words of the Constitution actually mean something beyond whatever an activist Congress, President, and pliant judge want them to mean.”

“One of the striking things about today’s ruling is that, for the first time in one of these cases, a Democrat-appointed judge, Frank Hull, has ruled against the government. Just as the Sixth Circuit Judge Jeffrey Sutton made waves by being the first Republican appointee to rule in the government’s favor, today’s 300-page ruling shows that the constitutional issues raised by the healthcare reform—and especially the individual mandate—are complex, serious, and non-ideological.”