RENO, NEVADA (Press International), June 25, 2012: The husbands and wives of the nation’s estimated 543 married Constitutional Law professors collectively filed for divorce today in Nevada state court, alleging that their spouses’ complete obsession with the United States Supreme Court’s upcoming ruling on the Affordable Care Act had effectively destroyed their marriages.
“It all started pretty innocuously, with him writing a simple symposium piece on whether early 19th Century precedents could somehow justify the ACA’s individual mandate,” said Marla Thompson, wife of UC-Irvine law professor Farley Thompson. “But then Farley got obsessed–the ACA litigation just took over his life. He told me that we couldn’t eat broccoli for dinner because the vegetable represented a ‘tool’ in the hands of the ‘Lochnerians.’ He would come home and read nothing but ancient admiralty treatises and Whiskey Rebellion conscription notices. He wouldn’t even carpool to work with me, unless I conceded at the outset of each trip that the government could properly demand that I replace our Honda with a Chrysler.”
Spouses of law professors known to oppose the ACA’s mandate voiced similar complaints. “I wish I had never heard of the Hkolov Cabal,” said Lawrence Tribkin, husband of Notre Dame professor Candace Yanders, referring to the law blog that has served as a central forum for anti-ACA commentary. Yanders, formerly known for her well-regarded work on the Nineteenth Amendment, “guest-blogged” on that site during May 2012. There, she revealed what she learned from 720 continuous hours of listening to the March 2012 oral argument on the ACA, as placed on a continuous loop in her office. In her post, Yanders asserted that if one plays the full audio recording of the oral argument backwards, at one point what sounds like Chief Justice John Roberts’ voice can be heard to say either “the ACA is dead,” or perhaps,”thacadad.”
Yanders, who has petitioned to change her name to “Metta World Barnett,” subsequently was committed to a mental institution for treatment.
On the courthouse steps, other petitioners related dysfunctional behaviors by their spouses such as: insisting, for several months running, that they were “this close” to being invited by SCOTUSblog to offer guest commentary on the ACA; repeatedly manipulating dinnertime servings of mashed potatoes into busts of Paul Clement; passing off suppositions about Justice Kennedy’s likely vote on the ACA as “bedtime stories” to young offspring; and otherwise obsessing about absolutely every single aspect of the ACA litigation.
The worst part, many of the spouses said, was the waiting. “I thought that this would all be over by June 18.” said Ron Anders, the husband of Ohio State University’s Thomas Chavez. “But no decision from the Court. Then, maybe earlier today. Again, no decision from the Court. Meanwhile, all Tom does, twenty-four hours a day, is sit in front of his computer hitting ‘refresh’ on the Supreme Court’s website. He hasn’t showered in something like three weeks now. I wish that we could go back to a simpler time, when all we worried about was what movie to go see on Friday, and whether the Second Amendment applied to the states.”
*** Previous www.noncuratlex.com news coverage of the ACA litigation can be found here.***