Barry Friedman’s “Obamacare and the Court” (September/October 2012) states that by upholding the mandate that individuals buy health insurance, U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts “preserved the standing of the Court and prevented the left from making the Court’s legitimacy an election issue.” 

Why is it only the left that has a claim on the Court’s legitimacy? As the 78th Federalist Paper notes, justices were given life tenure to ensure that they would be insulated from popular opinion. Instead of obsessing about what other people think, the justices should remember that their job, as Roberts himself said at his confirmation hearings, is “to call balls and strikes” when interpreting the constitutionality of legislation.

Martin J. Gross
Livingston, New Jersey