The Worldnutdaily is following its usual modus operandi when it’s really got a claim they want to hammer into the empty heads of their readers, printing a “new” article on the subject every day with almost nothing new in it. They’re doing that with Sen. Mike Lee’s book that claims Chief Justice John Roberts was “intimidated” into changing his vote in the health care reform case. Here’s the latest bit of dishonesty.
Shortly after the 5-4 ruling was handed down last summer, reports surfaced that Roberts originally sided with the three conservative justices and swing vote Anthony Kennedy to find the individual mandate unconstitutional. Sometime between the oral arguments in March and the final verdict in June, Roberts flipped his vote to uphold Obamacare. Kennedy reportedly tried for one month to convince Roberts to stick with his initial instinct and rule the mandate unconstitutional.
But Roberts refused to budge.
On April 2, Obama publicly declared, “Ultimately, I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress. And I’d just remind conservative commentators that for years what we’ve heard is, the biggest problem on the bench was judicial activism or a lack of judicial restraint – that an unelected group of people would somehow overturn a duly constituted and passed law. Well, this is a good example. And I’m pretty confident that this Court will recognize that and not take that step.”
Obama has publicly attacked the Court before, condemning the justices to their faces during the 2010 State of the Union for having “reversed a century of law to open the floodgates for special interests” in the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission case and urging Congress to “pass a bill that helps to right this wrong.”
That’s it. That’s the sum total of the “evidence” that Obama “intimidated” Roberts into changing his vote, that he said publicly that he disagreed with another court ruling and said he didn’t expect them to overturn the health care reform law. Wow, how…intimidating. Never mind that Republican presidents have long criticized Supreme Court rulings too. The first president Bush railed against the evil court for the flag burning decision in 1989.
And of course, I’m sure Sen. Lee would never call the recent declaration by dozens of religious right leaders that a ruling allowing marriage equality would undermine the legitimacy of the court and cause massive civil disobedience was an attempt to “intimidate” the court. It’s only wrong when liberals do it.