A pattern is emerging: Two judges appointed by Democratic presidents have upheld health-care reform, while two judges appointed by Republican presidents struck it down—including a Florida judge on Monday. “Given this divide, wouldn't it make sense to... let elected officials decide?” asks Jon Chait at The New Republic. “That's the logic of judicial restraint, anyway, and it's logic conservatives used to employ about a host of topics.” Still, the issue seems bound for the Supreme Court, where Republican appointees hold a 5-4 advantage. The matter will probably come down to Justice Anthony Kennedy, who sometimes breaks rank with the other Republican appointees, and whose record on the Constitution’s Commerce Clause (which was cited by those judges who annulled the law) is spotty enough to make his position on this issue impossible to guess.
On the Bench