Our colleague Stuart Gerson of Epstein Becker Green has a new post on SCOTUS Today that will be of interest to our readers: A Hint About the Future of the Affordable Care Act.
The following is an excerpt:
There were no opinions delivered today, only very heated and important argument in the consolidated cases of Brnovich v. Democratic National Committee and Arizona Republican Party v. Democratic National Committee.
These cases concern whether two of Arizona’s voting policies—one prohibiting counting provisional ballots cast on election day outside of a voter’s designated precinct, the other permitting only limited categories of persons, e.g., family members, caregivers and postal workers, from handling a voter’s completed early ballot—violate Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act and, in the case of one of them, whether it also violates the 15th Amendment.
And on Monday, the Court heard argument in United States v. Arthrex, the latest challenge to the Federal Circuit’s holding that U.S. Patent and Trademark administrative judges are principal officers of the United States because their adjudications of cases for the Executive Branch are unreviewable and, hence, that these patent judges should be excluded from civil service protections and the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“PTAB”) should be closed down. The problem is comparable to other Appointments Clause cases recently before the Court. Many of the Justices, particularly conservatives like Justice Kavanaugh, were, in questioning, clearly reticent to overthrow the entire patent review mechanism, and clearly leaning towards a more surgical solution: severing the provision of the law structuring the PTAB panels and thus leading to supervision by an official who is constitutionally appointed.
Click here to read the full post and more on SCOTUS Today.