Liberals who celebrated the Supreme Court’s decision on health care may be nursing an ugly hangover after the justices dive back into their work this fall, with a docket likely to be loaded with controversial cases.
And left-leaning courtwatchers are already worried about the jurist who brought them such relief last week: Chief Justice John Roberts.
Some liberals contend that Roberts’s surprise crossover on the health care law has given him a free hand to craft and sign onto a slew of conservative opinions next year without suffering much of a public drubbing from Democrats and the press. With one major case, Roberts may have inoculated himself and the court against charges of partisanship.
Well, we got into this mess, apparently, because Roberts caved to outside pressure, which he shouldn't have cared about in the first place. But I still think that if any of the big cases involving the non-negotiables find their way to the Roberts court, he'll fall on the right side. This certainly was the case with the partial-birth abortion ruling of some years back.
I am as confident of this as I was a week ago? No.