Absurd but serious question.
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The Supreme Court may soon need to decide whether the federal government can be considered a “state” in our federal republic in the same sense that Iowa, Wyoming and Wisconsin are states.

On the face of it, this question may seem absurd. In fact, given any level of reflection, it is absurd. The federal government is not one of the states.

But this absurd question was at the heart of Halbig v. Burwell, decided this week by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, and it could soon become a defining issue in American life.

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