POLL: Constitutional Law Professors Say Obamacare Is Constitutional

Healthcare Protests in Front of Supreme Court

Photo: AP

In a survey of constitutional law professors, Bloomberg found that 19 of the 21 surveyed believe that the Affordable Care Act championed by President Barack Obama is constitutional. But there’s a catch: Only eight of the 21 professors believe the Supreme Court will render that decision this week

Most of the professors surveyed changed their opinions after the oral arguments on the case in March brought sceptical questioning on the law’s constitutionality from many of the high court’s justices. That runs in line with a poll of former Supreme Court clerks and attorneys, who overwhelmingly shifted their expectations after the oral arguments and now think the law is “done for.”

The only respondent to say that the Supreme Court is “very likely” to uphold Obamacare and its most controversial position, the individual mandate, was Yale University professor Bruce Ackerman.

“I continue to find it extremely unlikely that Justices Roberts and Kennedy will support a 5-4 decision that has such an insubstantial basis in 75 years of Supreme Court case law,” Ackerman told Bloomberg. 

Christina Whitman, a professor from the University of Michigan, thinks Obamacare is constitutional but predicted its defeat in the Supreme Court this week:

“The precedent makes this a very easy case. But the oral argument indicated that the more conservative justices are striving to find a way to strike down the mandate.”

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