Supremes Watch

2 minute read

Affordable Care Act

President Obama’s signature health care law narrowly avoided reversal the last time it came before the high court. It will face another test in King v. Burwell, this time in the form of a challenge to the portion of the law that lets individuals benefit from tax subsidies when purchasing insurance through the federal exchange.

Same-sex marriage

It’s been a little over a year since the court granted same-sex couples access to federal benefits, but ambiguity over whether LGBT Americans have the constitutional right to marry may lead the court to revisit the issue. Most federal courts have opted to allow gay marriage, but a handful of challenges from state attorneys general could force the court’s hand.

Pregnancy discrimination

For nearly three decades, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act has ensured job protection for pregnant women. The limitations of that measure are being tested in Young v. United Parcel Service, a case that could determine whether women indeed have the right to lighter or different workloads during pregnancy.

Freedom of speech

Is a threat any less threatening if you post it in a Facebook status update, then later insist it’s a rap lyric? That’s the key issue in Elonis v. United States, in which the court will examine what exactly constitutes threatening language. The court may also take up whether or not the poster’s intent should be taken into consideration.

Religious freedom

The Hobby Lobby decision in 2014 established that corporations could have religious leanings. We’ll see how far the Roberts Court is willing to go to protect religious expression in Holt v. Hobbs, which will determine whether a Muslim prisoner has the right to grow a beard against prison regulations.

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