The Supreme Court, the Media, and Public Opinion: Comparing Experimental and Observational Methods by Katerina Linos, Kimberly Twist :: SSRN

February 5, 2017

Can Supreme Court rulings change Americans’ policy views? Prior experimental and observational studies come to conflicting conclusions because of methodological limitations. We argue that existing studies overlook the media’s critical role in communicating Court decisions and theorize that major decisions change Americans’ opinions most when the media offer one-sided coverage supportive of the Court majority. We fielded nationally representative surveys shortly before and after two major Supreme Court decisions on health care and immigration and connected our public opinion data with six major television networks’ coverage of each decision. We find that Court decisions can influence national opinion and increase support for policies the Court upholds as constitutional. These effects were largest among people who received one-sided information. To address selection concerns, we combined this observational study with an experiment and find that people who first heard about the Court decisions through the media and through the experiment responded in similar ways.

Source: The Supreme Court, the Media, and Public Opinion: Comparing Experimental and Observational Methods by Katerina Linos, Kimberly Twist :: SSRN


Neil Gorsuch upheld the rights of hated prisoners and Muslims | Washington Examiner

February 1, 2017

Twice in the Hobby Lobby case Gorsuch ruled against the Obama administration’s efforts to force the Green family to violate its conscience.

Source: Neil Gorsuch upheld the rights of hated prisoners and Muslims | Washington Examiner


Federalism and the Roberts Court by Ilya Somin :: SSRN

December 12, 2016

The Roberts Court saw a number of important advances for judicial enforcement of federalism-based limits on congressional power, both in high-profile cases such as NFIB v. Sebelius, and lesser known ones. The extent of these gains is greater than many observers recognize. Much of this progress fits the conventional model of federalism as a left-right ideological issue on the Court, dividing liberal Democrats from conservative Republicans. But some noteworthy developments depart from this framework, and suggest a greater degree of openness to federalism among the liberal justices, and perhaps others on the left.

Source: Federalism and the Roberts Court by Ilya Somin :: SSRN


What can Trump do on day one to the Affordable Care Act? | The Incidental Economist

November 10, 2016

When it comes to the ACA, the first major question facing an incoming President Trump will be whether to terminate cost-sharing payments to health plans. Already, prominent voices are calling on him to immediately cut off payments. What effect would that have? And what are his options?

Source: What can Trump do on day one to the Affordable Care Act? | The Incidental Economist


Republican Congress & President Trump’s Obamacare Path Forward: What Now? | National Review

November 9, 2016

A major initial test for Mr. Trump: What to do about Obamacare’s cost-sharing subsidies, funds that the Obama administration has provided to insurers even though the text of the law itself nowhere provides an explicit appropriation for such spending. As I previously noted, Mr. Trump could immediately cut off these funds to insurers upon taking office. Such an action would be entirely consistent with House Republicans’ lawsuit against the administration for spending money not appropriated — and with the initial legal victory they received from the courts in May.

Source: Republican Congress & President Trump’s Obamacare Path Forward: What Now? | National Review


EXCLUSIVE: Obama Admin Used Tax Return Info To Market Obamacare | The Daily Caller

November 8, 2016

The legality of the alleged actions by the Obama administration would almost certainly be in question.

“Federal laws protect the confidentiality of tax returns and tax information. According to 26 § U.S.C. 6103, it is unlawful for an employee of the United States or a State to “disclose any return or return information obtained by him in any manner in connection with his service … The law allows for tax information to be used for the limited purpose of determining ACA subsidy eligibility. It does not, however, permit CMS to market ACA subsidies to taxpayers who have already rejected ObamaCare,” CoA states in the FOIA request.

Source: EXCLUSIVE: Obama Admin Used Tax Return Info To Market Obamacare | The Daily Caller


It’s about Money: The Fundamental Contradiction of Hobby Lobby by Nomi Maya Stolzenberg :: SSRN

November 7, 2016

This Article contends that arguments for and against Hobby Lobby both fail to comprehend the special nature of money. As a consequence, opponents of Hobby Lobby wrongly deny the existence of a substantial burden, while Hobby Lobby’s supporters fail to see that the understanding of financial transactions that underlies their conception of complicity refutes their libertarian views. Financial complicity, as construed by Hobby Lobby’s proponents, should be recognized as a burden on religious exercise. But for the same reason that the financial obligations imposed by the “contraceptive mandate” constitute a burden, they also correlate to countervailing state interests that necessarily outweigh the right to religious freedom. A proper assessment of complicity-based claims and a proper application of the compelling state interest standard both require a better understanding of how money ties people together in relationships which make them mutually responsible for one another’s actions, regardless of what they intend. This recognition of how money works is already reflected in our laws against “material support.” This Article seeks to show the similarities between religious conceptions of complicity and legal conceptions of material support and to develop a better theoretical understanding of the distinctive properties of money and financial complicity claims.

Source: It’s about Money: The Fundamental Contradiction of Hobby Lobby by Nomi Maya Stolzenberg :: SSRN