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Why Does Newt Gingrich Think John Roberts' Health Care Ruling Is 'Probably Good'?

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"Healthy for the country to be forced to confront."

AP

Newt Gingrich Roberts Health Care ruling

Former presidential candidate Newt Gingrich struck a different tone from other conservatives regarding the Supreme Court's decision to uphold President Barack Obama's health care overhaul: He thinks it's "probably good."

The former House Speaker -- who railed against the Affordable Care Act while on the campaign trail -- told the Huffington Post he was "curious" why Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the liberal wing of the court to uphold the law, but thinks the decision will ultimately be "healthy for the country."

"In a way, because I really do believe we want a less interventionist court, placing the political decision back on the American people I think's probably good," Gingrich told the site Wednesday.

The Supreme Court's decision, Gingrich said, is "probably Obama's worst nightmare" because it makes the November election an even starker choice between the president and Mitt Romney.

"What Roberts has said is, 'Yes, it's constitutional because of a gigantic tax increase, and if you don't want the gigantic tax increase you've got to beat Obama,'" Gingrich said. "You don't just get to come to the Supreme Court to bail you out. And I happen to think that part of it is probably healthy for the country to be forced to confront, that it's their burden."

Still, Gingrich said he was "surprised" by Roberts' ruling because its unpredictability.

"I think that one of the things for the rule of law to work, is you have to have predictability," he said. "It is a little jarring to that pattern when you have Chief Justice Roberts and the four liberals suddenly on a major issue voting against the four conservatives. I think there's some degree to which you want a continuity."

Gingrich's comment about wanting a "less interventionist court" is in line with remarks he made while campaigning for president in December, when he blasted an "increasingly arrogant judiciary" committing a "fundamental assault on our liberties" with judicial overreach.

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