“Hijacking, evidently, is this year’s broccoli”

By Gregory M. Lipper

Linda Greenhouse has another must-read column about the Supreme Court contraception cases, and she predicts that the religious objectors will reject the compromise proposed by the Court in Tuesday’s order requesting supplemental briefing:

Would opt-out-without-notice serve just as well? If women would still get their coverage, probably it would. Will the religious interests resist taking “yes” for an answer, as they have from the beginning of this litigation?

Probably they will, because they are after bigger game: getting the Supreme Court to interpret the Religious Freedom Restoration Act to mean anything they say it means.

Relatedly, I discussed (along with Jeffrey Rosen and Michael Moreland) both the Zubik oral argument and supplemental-briefing order, on the National Constitution Center’s We the People podcast; you can listen here.

Greg Lipper (@theglipper) is Senior Litigation Counsel at Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

‘The Week in Health Law’ Podcast

By Nicolas Terry and Frank Pasquale

twihl 5x5

This week we interviewed Christopher Robertson, a professor and associate dean at the James E. Rogers College of Law, University of Arizona, and affiliated faculty with the Petrie Flom Center for Health Care Policy, Bioethics and Biotechnology at Harvard. Robertson also leads the Regulatory Science program, a partnership with the Arizona Health Sciences Center and the Critical Path Institute.

We mainly discussed Robertson’s new book with past TWIHL guest Aaron Kesselheim, Blinding as a Solution to Bias:  Strengthening Biomedical Science, Forensic Science, and Law. The book is a tour de force collection of approaches to improving our knowledge of optimal medical, legal, and forensic practices.

We also discussed some of Robertson’s recent contributions to insurance law and policy, including Scaling Cost-Sharing to Wages: How Employers Can Reduce Health Spending and Provide Greater Economic Security, as well as A Randomized Experiment of the Split Benefit Health Insurance Reform to Reduce High-Cost, Low-Value Consumption. The latter work, combined with Episode 47’s discussion with Mark Hall about employer-based exchanges, may well signal a gradual transition toward defined contribution (rather than defined benefit) health insurance plans.