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Supreme Court appears willing to leave Obamacare in place

first_img– Advertisement – The court’s six conservatives seemed sympathetic to arguments made by Kyle Hawkins, the Texas Solicitor General, and acting Justice Department Solicitor General Jeffrey Wall that the individual mandate became unconstitutional when it was stripped of an accompanying penalty.But Roberts and Kavanaugh suggested that would not doom the rest of the law.“I think it’s hard for you to argue that Congress intended the entire act to fall if the mandate was struck down,” Roberts told Hawkins. Roberts was appointed by President George W. Bush.Roberts acknowledged that some Republican lawmakers may have wanted the Supreme Court to strike down the law, “but that’s not our job.”Kavanaugh told Donald Verrilli, who was solicitor general under former President Barack Obama, that “I tend to agree with you that this is a very straightforward case” and that under the court’s precedents “we would excise the mandate and leave the rest of the act in place.”Later, Kavanaugh told Hawkins that it “sure seems” like Congress in 2017 wanted to lower the individual mandate penalty without getting rid of the Affordable Care Act’s other provisions, such as its protections for those with preexisting conditions.The court’s three liberals, Justice Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan are expected to side with California and a coalition of other Democratic-led states that are defending Obamacare. It takes five votes to gain a majority on the nine-judge panel.Two lower courts sided with Texas, including the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals court, that the individual mandate was unlawful. The appeals court did not say whether the rest of the Affordable Care Act would also have to be struck down.Arguments, which were scheduled to last for 80 minutes, began at 10 a.m. ET and were continuing around 12 p.m. ET.A decision is expected toward the end of June.The case is known as California v. Texas, No. 19-840.This is breaking news. Check back for updates.  – Advertisement – A demonstrator holds a sign in front of the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC, on November 10, 2020, as the high court opened arguments in the long-brewing case over the constitutionality of the 2010 Affordable Care Act, under which then-president Barack Obama’s government sought to extend health insurance to people who could not afford it.Nicholas Kamm | AFP | Getty Imagescenter_img The Affordable Care Act seems likely to withstand its third challenge at the Supreme Court.Several of the court’s conservatives on Tuesday expressed an unwillingness to strike down the landmark legislation during oral arguments in a case brought by red states seeking to eliminate the law.Chief Justice John Roberts, who cast the key vote in 2012 upholding Obamacare, and Justice Brett Kavanaugh, an appointee of President Donald Trump, both suggested that the court may cast aside a challenged provision of the law, known as the individual mandate, while leaving the rest of it standing.- Advertisement – The individual mandate provision, as enacted in 2010, requires most Americans to obtain health insurance or pay a penalty. The GOP-controlled Congress reduced the penalty to $0 in 2017.The Supreme Court upheld the mandate in 2012 under Congress’s taxing power, but Texas and other Republican-led states argued that the reduction of the penalty made that justification no longer workable, and as a result the whole Affordable Care Act must be struck down. The Trump administration, via the Department of Justice, argued in favor of the red states’ challenge.Health-care activists warned that if the Supreme Court struck down the Affordable Care Act, more than 20 million people could lose their insurance. The dispute, which was argued in the shadow of last week’s presidential election, was a central focus of Democrats during the confirmation hearings for Justice Amy Coney Barrett last month.- Advertisement –last_img read more

Bill GatesBacked Startup Wants to Test Its AntiDrone Radar at Super Bowl

first_imgStay on target Civilian drones, beware: Echodyne, a startup backed by Bill Gates, is trying to test its anti-drone radar at the upcoming Super Bowl game.Last week, Echodyne filed an application with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to pilot two anti-drone radars near Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta to “alert security personnel, including federal officers, of any unidentified drone activity during Super Bowl LIII,” The Guardian reported.The experiment flights, which would be conducted under FBI surveillance, would detect and follow civilian drones in three dimensions up to 0.6 miles away. According to Echodyne, the anti-drone radars, which are the size of paperback novels, can sense, identify, and track flying objects.Echodyne’s anti-drone radars are expensive, however, their $150,000 price is more budget-friendly compared to other drone-focused military systems. Plus, it could come in handy for major sports events, such as the Super Bowl.On Jan. 27, the Atlanta Police Department issued a statement banning drones from the Mercedes-Benz Stadium area, and said anyone who breaks this rule could face criminal penalties, the Associated Press reported. Carlos Campos, a spokesman for the Atlanta Police Department, told the Associated Press that hundreds of officers will be monitoring Super Bowl areas for illegal drone use.Will Echodyne be able to fly its anti-drone radars at the Super Bowl? Due to the recent government shutdown, Ecodyne’s FCC application was delayed, so it’s unknown if the startup will conduct testing on Sunday. Regardless, it will be interesting to see if this technology is used at major sports venues in the future.More on Geek.com:Volvo Wants You to Skip the Super Bowl and Win a S60 Car With a SmartphoneSuper Bowl Tech Deals: Best Sales From Amazon, Best Buy, and More This 10-Year-Old Won a Science Fair By ‘Proving’ Tom Brady Is a Cheater Amazon’s New Facial Recognition Smells Your FearSnapchat’s New Snap Spectacles Will Have Two Cameras, Cost $350 last_img read more