Washington (CNN) – The Supreme Court arguments Tuesday may be the most pivotal 120 minutes of judicial interaction in decades. (Nit-pickers: Bush v. Gore was 90 minutes.)
But not everyone has two hours to listen to the full audio. Thus, we've edited and compiled the top five exchanges that may give insight into how the justices see the case. Ordered by when they happened, not by importance.
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1. Opening Arguments
There is unmistakable contrast between the first seconds of U.S. Solicitor General Donald Verrilli's opening statement and the beginning of opposing attorney Paul Clement's opening remarks. Each man had just a few seconds to speak before justices interrupted with questions. In his time, Verrilli paused, cleared his throat, repeated a sentence as if to reset himself and stopped for a drink of water. Clement, speaking approximately 56 minutes later, had a different tone.
Listen here to how both men opened their arguments, one after the other.
The power veggie has become the metaphor of choice for how far the government's power can reach. Throughout Tuesday's hearing, justices challenged Verrilli to explain whether, if the government can require individuals to buy health insurance, could it require citizens to do things like eat broccoli? Justice Anthony Kennedy, often a swing vote on the court, seemed especially focused on this argument.
Listen here to Justices Scalia, Kennedy and Roberts pursue the broccoli and commerce argument.
3. Kennedy: The Skeptic
As usual with this divided court, the spotlight initially fell on frequent deciding justice Anthony Kennedy. Tuesday the Reagan appointee pounded out skepticism, repeatedly asking whether the government has overstepped its authority. Kennedy maintained that the health care law requires people to purchase specific packages of health care that they may not otherwise have to buy in their lifetime.
Listen here to Justice Kennedy and Solicitor General Verrilli on federal government power.
4. Left-leaning Bloc Supports Verrilli
Justices Breyer, Ginsburg, Kagan and Sotomayor often seemed to guide Solicitor General Verrilli's arguments when he was speaking. Conversely, they asked the sharpest questions of attorney Paul Clement who represented Florida and the other states opposing the law.
Listen here to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg pointing out an aspect of Verrilli's argument to the solicitor general.
5. Roberts: A Swing Vote?
Throughout Tuesday's hearing, Chief Justice John Roberts seemed to bring up the government's strongest arguments more than any other conservative appointee to the court. When attorney Paul Clement presented the case opposing the health care law, Roberts challenged him to explain why government should not regulate the health care market. Clement responded with an example, saying that the United States could not require every American to buy bread in order to support the wheat market. But Roberts quickly rejected that argument, saying that the health care market is not limited, like the wheat market, but "includes everyone".
Listen here to Chief Justice Roberts and Paul Clement, attorney for Florida and other states, argue about the health care market.
- CNN's Dan Szematowicz contributed to this report.