Related Content: SCOTUS

Tea Leaf Reading at Its Best: Eavesdropping on the Supreme Court

Gwen's Take

Updated 3/30/12 12:24pm

I was never tempted to go to law school. But I love to parse language and reasoning, so listening to the audio of this week’s Supreme Court health care arguments was -- in its nerdy way -- actually quite enjoyable.

Because the courts remain the only branch of the federal government that still stubbornly bans cameras from proceedings, we rely on audiotapes released later in the day to hear history unfold. It’s there where those of us who don’t get into the room get to listen for cadence, eloquence, and even humor.

Reeling White House Steps Into Health Care Breach

On The Radar

The Obama White House, beset by a barrage of liberal criticism over an allegedly inept defense of its signature domestic policy achievement, on Wednesday defended the health care law's constitutionality not on legal grounds but on purely partisan ones. “The individual-responsibility provision was originally a Republican idea,” said White House deputy press secretary Josh Earnest at the daily briefing, altering the common terminology “individual mandate” to the theoretically more politically palatable “individual responsibility.”

Obama Lawyer Asks Supreme Court to Save Healthcare Law

On The Radar

The Obama administration's top courtroom lawyer made an impassioned plea on Wednesday for the Supreme Court to save President Barack Obama's healthcare law, capping three days of historic arguments that left it unclear how the nine justices would rule. Having peppered lawyers for and against the law with questions for more than six hours over the three days, the justices withdrew to their chambers to begin up to three months of deliberation expected to yield a decision by late June.

Parties Brace for Fallout in Court’s Ruling on Health Care

On The Radar

The law professor side of President Obama is highly intrigued by the Supreme Court hearings over the constitutionality of his health care law. He studied a summary of the arguments aboard Air Force One as he flew back from a nuclear summit meeting in South Korea. The political side of the president may need to draw upon his judicial patience as he awaits a ruling that will help shape the final stages of the presidential race.

Looking Ahead to the Roberts Court

Vault Show

As the Roberts Supreme Court reviews the historic case challenging President Obama's 2010 Health Reform law, take a look back to 2005 when John Roberts replaced William Rehnquist as Chief Justice. A discussion of the generational shift represented by the Roberts Court and the what issues were important in his first years on the bench. Revisit our program from September 30, 2005, the same day Roberts was sworn in.

Justices Skeptical of Health Care Law

On The Radar

PBS NewsHour: Supreme Court Considers Health Reform; Day 2 Recap: Individual Mandate on Trial

Web content

Arguments at the Supreme Court Tuesday dealt with whether Congress had the authority to require citizens to purchase health insurance and whether the government could issue a financial penalty for those who decline. Betty Ann Bowser reports then Marcia Coyle and Susan Dentzer discuss the day's proceedings with Gwen Ifill.

Supreme Court Divided over Obama Healthcare Law

On The Radar

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday appeared closely divided along ideological lines over whether Congress had the power to require most people in the United States to buy medical insurance, with conservative justices asking skeptical questions about President Barack Obama's healthcare law and liberals defending it.
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Supreme Court Moves to Heart of Obama Healthcare Case

On The Radar

The Supreme Court confronted the core of President Barack Obama's healthcare law on Tuesday, zeroing in on whether Congress had the power to require most people in the United States to buy medical insurance.
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High Court Hears Health Care Arguments

On The Radar

NBC's Pete Williams reports on the Health Care Reform case before the Supreme Court