My worry is that Kagan has already told Obama that he won the first vote and he’s grandstanding to make it look like he won by scaring the court.
Doubt it, it would probably just as likely piss Kennedy off enough to change that 5th vote.
Why? If it went his way it went narrowly, why p.o. your 5th vote if it's in the pocket?
No, Bobo's temper tantrum was for Kennedy, who has signed on to Nino & Sam's overturn of Obamacare.
That was my first thought.
Whoa! Hadn't thought of that one ..... damn, that is ugly to think about.
OTOH, they can change their votes, yes?
Maybe he sees it as win-win. Either they give him the ability to make an appearance of the Court knuckling under, or he can go the other way with the "five old men!" rant.
Keep in mind that CJ Roberts is known to be allergic to 5-4 "controversial and divisive" (i.e., conservatives win) SCOTUS decisions. So if it's close, and Kennedy swings over to the 'Rat side, Roberts might join them just to make the decision 6-3 and give the appearance of a united Supreme Court.
Obama's campaign suggests he knows this and, in addition to everything heretofore stipulated and speculated, may be trying to blackmail Kennedy and Roberts, using the Court's good name as leverage. His offer could be, "look, you can't stand another Bush/Gore flame war, so roll over while you can and make it 6-3 my way, or there'll be nothing left of your institutional prestige when I'm done with you."
If he is determined to make trouble, then there are so many arrows in his quiver, and so many possible avenues, you can go nuts thinking about them.