Fox News appears ready to continue its campaign against the Affordable Care Act by preemptively defending the Supreme Court should it choose to strike down the law.
During today's edition of Fox's “straight news” program, America Live, guest host Alisyn Camerota led off a segment by airing a clip of President Obama's criticism of the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. FEC during his 2010 State of the Union speech. Camerota then asked: “Could history repeat itself? We're hearing from some liberal groups laying out plans to use the Supreme Court as a political piñata if it rules against the health care law.”
But progressives are hardly the only ones pointing out that if the Supreme Court ignores the text and history of the Constitution as well as its own precedent, the decision might very well be based more on politics than law.
In fact, Charles Fried, a former solicitor general under President Ronald Reagan, remarked that the reason the legal arguments against the Affordable Care Act are being taken seriously is “politics, politics, politics.”
From an interview Fried gave to The Washington Post's Ezra Klein:
EZRA KLEIN: On that, there's been a real change from early on, when almost all Supreme Court observers thought this case was a joke, to now, when it seems truly up in the air. Did people underestimate the seriousness of the constitutional questions here, or did they underestimate the politicization of the judiciary?
CHARLES FRIED: Politics, politics, politics. You look at the wonderful decision by Jeff Sutton, who is as much of a 24-karat gold conservative as anyone could be. He is a godfather to the Federalist Society. Look at his opinion. Or look at Larry Silberman's opinion. I don't understand what's gotten into people. Well, I do I'm afraid, but it's politics, not anything else.
And Fried is not the only one. Earlier this week, Rush Limbaugh seemed to be openly rooting for the justices to issue a political ruling. During the March 27 edition of his radio show, Limbaugh said that Obama showed “open contempt” for the five conservative justices with whom he disagreed on Citizens United. Limbaugh then said those justices might be looking for “a little payback,” although Limbaugh added that there would be no way to know for sure how the justices came to their conclusion.