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A Conspiracy Against Obamacare: The Volokh Conspiracy and the Health Care Case [Kindle Edition]

Randy E. Barnett , Jonathan H. Adler , David E. Bernstein , Orin S. Kerr , David B. Kopel , Ilya Somin , Trevor Burrus
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The debate over the Affordable Care Act was one of the most important and public examinations of the Constitution in our history. At the forefront of that debate were the legal scholars blogging at the Volokh Conspiracy, who engaged in a spirited, erudite, and accessible discussion of the legal issues involved in the cases - beginning before the law was even passed. Several of the Volokh bloggers played key roles in developing the constitutional arguments against the ACA. Their blog posts and articles about the Act had a significant impact on both the public debate and the legal arguments in the case. It was perhaps the first time that a blog affected arguments submitted to the United States Supreme Court on a major issue. In the process, the bloggers helped legitimize a new type of legal discourse.

This book compiles the discussion that unfolded at the Volokh Conspiracy blog into a readable narrative, enhanced with new context and analysis, as the contributors reflect on the Obamacare litigation with the advantage of hindsight. The different bloggers certainly did not always agree with each other, but the back-and-forth debates provide momentum as the reader follows the development of the arguments over time. A Conspiracy Against Obamacare exemplifies an important new form of legal discourse and public intellectualism.

Editorial Reviews


"[A] unique book.... In times past, lawyers and judges sometimes looked to law reviews for guidance. Today, however, that seems so passé, rather like going to a pay phone to make a "long distance" call.... Enter the bloggers of the VC ilk. Timely, substantive, influential - that is their calling card, at least at their better moments. For all intents and purposes, the future belongs to the bloggers." - Ronald Collins, SCOTUSblog

"The Volokh Conspiracy gave Obamacare much of the constitutional scrutiny it should have but did not receive in Congress. Although the law raises serious constitutional questions, few initially appreciated the significance of these issues. By providing serious, sophisticated analysis, the Volokh Conspiracy raised awareness of the legitimate constitutional challenge to Obamacare and helped advance that challenge."—US Senator Michael S. Lee, Utah

"The constitutional debate over the Affordable Care Act was among the most vibrant in recent Supreme Court history, and there was no more important platform for the debate than the Volokh Conspiracy. By collecting the leading arguments for and against the constitutionality of the ACA, the editors of the Conspiracy - a blog with a provocative name and an ecumenical spirit - have performed an invaluable service."—Jeffrey Rosen, President of the National Constitution Center and Legal Affairs Editor, The New Republic, USA

"In the old days, the legal conversation took place on law reviews, and it wasn't much of a 'conversation,' really. Now it takes place on lawblogs and it's rich and highly interactive. Legal historians of the future will find this book an indispensable source on the legal conversation around Obamacare.— Glenn Reynolds, Beauchamp Brogan Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Tennessee, and author of

"The Constitution had its Federalist Papers, and the challenge to the Affordable Care Act had the Volokh Conspiracy."—Paul D. Clement, Partner, Bancroft PLLC, 43rd Solicitor General of the United States, and counsel to 26 states in the challenge to the Affordable Care Act, from the Foreword

About the Author

Randy E. Barnett is the Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Legal Theory, Georgetown University Law Center and Director, Georgetown Center for the Constitution.
Jonathan H. Adler is the Johan Verheij Memorial Professor of Law at Case Western Reserve University School of Law.
David E. Bernstein is the George Mason University Foundation Professor at the George Mason University School of Law.
Orin Kerr is the Fred C. Stevenson Research Professor at the George Washington University Law School.
David B. Kopel is the Research Director at the Independence Institute.
Ilya Somin is Professor of Law at the George Mason University School of Law.

Editor Trevor Burrus is a Research Fellow at the Cato Institute Center for Constitutional Studies.

Product Details

  • File Size: 700 KB
  • Print Length: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (November 12, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00H1XSD4Y
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #925,078 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
It is a good book, but written for those with some knowledge of constitutional law, as it is a debate among legal scholars and an analusis of the pertinent case law. Will be boring to those with no background.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good detail, but too much repeat discussion February 5, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
After all the back and forth of the mandate and the commerce clause the book did not give enough of their opinion as to whether the ACA was constitutional or not. Do we care or what to speculate why Justice Roberts pulled a switch or not? We want to know if we have to accept this as the "Law of the Land" now.
I do believe that we have a law that prevents insurance companies from doing commerce over state lines. Is the Federal Government exempt from this Law?
Just an aside, here in the state of Illinois, to get a drivers licence one must show that he has auto insurance. Is this the same as making on participate in the ACA? Incidentally, they don't care what state your coverage is from. Is this legal?
All in all, the book did not go out on the hook to say the Affordable Care Act was constitutional or not.
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