CEI Today: Court news in Clean Water Act + Obamacare, union pensions, and Human Achievement Hour this week



Examiner.com:Supreme Court Justices skeptical of tax argument for Obamacare

The Supreme Court seemed skeptical of the argument that the Tax Anti-Injunction Act bars it from hearing constitutional challenges to the 2010 healthcare law popularly known as "Obamacare."  This became clear at oral argument today at the Supreme Court, which was surrounded by protesters in Washington, D.C., supporting and opposing Obamacare.  Even liberal justices like Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg were skeptical of claims that the Tax Anti-Injunction Act bars the courts from ruling on Obamacare's constitutionality.  So it appears likely that the Supreme Court will rule on whether the healthcare law violates the Constitution, rather than sidestepping the constitutional issues by dismissing the challenge as "unripe." > Read more on Examiner.com

> Interview Hans Bader



Globalwarming.org: Good Guys Win Big Battle in EPA’s War on Appalachian Coal Production


Because that high profile [Sackett] case [last weekk] captured all the attention, it was little noticed last Friday when property rights advocates won a similarly consequential victory. That afternoon, United States District Court for the District of Columbia Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled that EPA overstepped its authority when it vetoed a Clean Water Act permit that had already been issued to the Mingo Logan Coal Company, a subsidiary of Arch Coal, for a mountaintop removal mining project in Logan County, West Virginia. The profound matter at hand was whether EPA could revoke a Clean Water Act permit, after it became the possession of the applicant. Had EPA carried the day, permit (i.e., property) owners nationwide would be subject to the cessation of business, depending on EPA’s whims. >View the full commentary on Globalwarming.org


Openmarket.org: Rhode Island Pension Reform Shows Boldness Pays

Across the nation, large and growing budget deficits have forced politicians from across the political spectrum, including some Democrats, to seek to bring public employee compensation under control. This has required them to take on government employee unions, which has created considerable friction between the unions and their traditional Democratic allies (a point I’ve noted elsewhere).

Many Democratic lawmakers’ reform proposals have not been as far-ranging as those put forth by their Republican counterparts, but deep-blue Rhode Island is a notable exception. In fact, the Ocean State’s  pension reforms are the boldest in the nation to date. > Read the full commentary on Openmarket.org

> Interview Ivan Osorio


> Read on labor union issues at Workplacechoice.org



Saturday, March 31

HAH is an annual event to recognize and celebrate human achievement and innovation. During the hour, participants are asked to listen to music, surf the internet, have a glass of beer, and generally enjoy the fruits of the human mind which would not have been possible in a world where conservation restrains advancement.

HAH can be
celebrated anywhere from 8:30pm to 9:30pm. In addition, CEI will be hosting a celebration at our headquarters in Washington, DC and live streaming our event online.

Join the HAH Facebook group.