The SCOTUS dissent wanted to strike down the entire ACA law, a very radical decision in light of past precedent. As it is three prominent legal conservatives (Silberman, Sutton and Fried) found nothing unconstitutional about the ACA. Going further, striking down the entire ACA law would've resulted in chaos in this country as many elements and components of the law are already fully functioning within our current health care system.I was glad to read that Linda Greenhouse agreed:
Roberts knew all of this and along with his concern for how the Court would appear on the heels of GW vs. Gore and Citizens United, I believe he stepped in and uncharacteristically became a liberal, countering the dissent.
[I]t was encouraging to learn that Roberts will only go so far with the other right-wing Justices when it comes to radical rulings.
I doubt there was a single reason for the chief justice’s evolution (I know, conservatives hate that word in the context of Supreme Court justices’ ideological trajectories), but let me suggest one: the breathtaking radicalism of the other four conservative justices. The opinion pointedly signed individually by Justices Kennedy, Thomas, Antonin Scalia and Samuel A. Alito Jr. would have invalidated the entire Affordable Care Act, finding no one part of it severable from the rest. This astonishing act of judicial activism has received insufficient attention, because it ultimately didn’t happen, but it surely got the chief justice’s attention as a warning that his ostensible allies were about to drive the Supreme Court over the cliff and into the abyss.It's heartening to know that when push comes to shove, even right-winger Chief Justice Roberts will stop the madness, clunking the heads of the other four stooges and ultimately rule in favor of judicial sanity as opposed to ideological purity.