Supreme Court Corporate Majority Continues to Support Chamber of Commerce Agenda

Friday, July 04, 2014
Thomas Donohue, president and CEO of U.S. Chamber of Commerce

All in all it was a good term at the U.S. Supreme Court for the Chamber of Commerce, which scored 70% in terms of cases won in its favor.


The Chamber was victorious in 11 out of 16 cases in which it supported one side, according to the Constitutional Accountability Center (CAC), which has been keeping tabs on the court led by Chief Justice John Roberts, who was appointed by President George W. Bush.


Justices Samuel Alito, Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy, John Roberts and Clarence Thomas all voted the Chamber’s position more than 70% of the time.


The business group’s overall 69% scorecard was just slightly off its 70% victory rate since Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito joined the court.


“It was a very big term for large corporations as the business community’s long-term investment in the law and the courts continues to pay huge dividends,” wrote CAC’s Doug Kendall.


One of the Chamber’s big wins this term was NLRB v. Noel Canning (pdf), in which the court invalidated President Obama’s recess appointments of several National Labor Relations Board members. Although the decision was narrower than the outcome the Chamber had sought, it was nonetheless a win for them, as the ruling is expected to serve as a blow to unions and a boon to big business. In an unusual move, the Chamber directly represented Noel Canning Corp., one of its member businesses, before the court, rather than filing the more customary “friend of court” brief.


Over the past three terms, the Chamber has enjoyed an even higher score than this term’s 70% win rate, going 32-8 during that span (80%).


This rate is considerably higher than what the Chamber managed when the court was led by Chief Justice William Rehnquist from 1994 to 2005. Rehnquist, another Republican appointee (selected by President Richard Nixon, elevated to chief justice by Ronald Reagan), managed to help the business lobby only 56% of the time.

-Noel Brinkerhoff, Danny Biederman


To Learn More:

A Corporate Court? (Constitutional Accountability Center)

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Continues Its Winning Ways (by Tom Donnelly, Constitutional Accountability Center)

The Chamber of Commerce Won More Than Two-Thirds of Its Supreme Court Cases This Term (by Nicole Flatow, Think Progress)

Does the Chamber of Commerce Own the Supreme Court? (by Steve Straehley, AllGov)

Is the Roberts Supreme Court in the Pocket of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce?(by Matt Bewig, AllGov)


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