Updated 12:15pm PT

The Supreme Court heard two sets of oral arguments today in its final day of considering the health care overhaul. The second arguments were extended and wrapped up about an hour ago. In that session, the Court addressed the question:

Is the Medicaid expansion constitutional?

Remember that Medicaid is the health care plan for the poor and disabled that is run by individual states with both state and federal dollars. The Affordable Care Act expands those eligible for Medicaid to adults earning 133 percent of the federal poverty level. But in order for states to continue receiving any federal money for Medicaid, the ACA requires them to comply with this expansion. Twenty-six states have challenged this requirement saying that withholding all monies for Medicaid is coercive and therefore unconstitutional. Those states which support the expansion–including California–say that Congress can constitutionally attach such conditions under what’s known as the “Spending Clause.”

You can listen to the complete oral arguments about Medicaid expansion here:

Or read on for the complete transcript … and for audio/transcripts of all the Court’s earlier sessions:

Original post 9:45am PT:

In the first set of arguments earlier today, the Court addressed the question:

If the Individual Mandate is Unconstitutional, Can the Rest of the ACA Go Forward?

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court heard arguments about the constitutionality of the individual mandate. What about the rest of the ACA? If the individual mandate is struck down, can the rest of the ACA go forward? Earlier this morning the Court heard arguments to determine if the mandate can be “severed” from the Affordable Care Act, allowing the remainder of the ACA to stand.

You can listen to the complete oral arguments here:

Or read the complete transcript:

The audio and transcript of Tuesday’s oral arguments at the Supreme Court can be found here.

The audio and transcript of Monday’s oral arguments can be found here.

Audio/Transcripts of Supreme Court Hearings on the Fate of the Health Law 29 March,2012Lisa Aliferis

  • Ft

    it would be nice if the Supreme Court Justices debated and decided on the merits of the case. But alas, that is not the case. 8 of the 9 have already made up their mind, or so the vegas odds say.


Lisa Aliferis

Lisa Aliferis is the founding editor of KQED’s State of Health blog. Since 2011, she’s been writing and editing stories for the site. Before taking up blogging, she toiled for many years (more than we can count) producing health stories for television, including Dateline NBC and San Francisco’s CBS affiliate, KPIX-TV. She also wrote up a handy guide to the Affordable Care Act, especially for Californians. Her work has been honored for many awards. Most recently she was a finalist for “Best Topical Reporting” from the Online News Association. You can follow her on Twitter: @laliferis

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