What he’s been up to: Tom Goldstein doesn’t do things in the traditional way. But in schooling major media about what really happened in the landmark health care decision, the SCOTUSblog founder may have shown us how traditional values of patience and actual knowledge are still necessary and valuable, even in an age of information measured in nanoseconds.
While some major news outlets focused on a line in the June 28 U.S. Supreme Court opinion and declared the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate had been rejected, the 2009 Legal Rebel quickly got that the court had upheld the act under Congress’ taxing power.
Right now he’s interested in: Archery and lacrosse, thanks to his daughters, but Goldstein feels that surviving the health care opinion is his latest accomplishment. Besides having to parse a complicated opinion on the morning of its release, Goldstein faced hackers’ attempts to attack his website, SCOTUSblog. The attempts failed, thanks to months the site’s managing director spent augmenting its capacity.
“We ended up having two different companies host us on six different computer servers. We thought we might have 250,000 people—we wound up having 2 million,” says Goldstein, a partner with Washington, D.C.’s Goldstein & Russell. He went back to running his own law firm in 2011 after a stint co-chairing Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld’s litigation practice.
Goldstein started SCOTUSblog for business development in 2002 with his wife and law partner, Amy Howe. Today, he says, the best part about being an attorney is having the freedom to do anything.