Health Care Opinion Took Court Out of Political Fray

With last week's health care ruling, the National Law Journal points out that both wings took steps toward each other, which "kept the court from becoming a major political issue from now until the November election." "It was a moment in which the court was potentially in jeopardy, and that was completely sidestepped," said Barry Friedman of New York University School of Law. Another professor called the health care decision a "defining point avoided" because of the ramifications for the court if the health care decision had gone against President Obama, while another said the opinion was up there with Marbury v. Madison. But whether it's a ground-shifting is doubtful. "Roberts and several of the liberals have forged a working coalition here," Duke Law professor Neil Siegel said. "It's not likely you can say that's going to happen when they get to affirmative action or the Defense of Marriage Act. Roberts is a real conservative."