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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Commentators Agree: The Corporate Court Comes Through for Big Business

The Corporate Court concluded its 2010-11 term last week and the reviews are in. Supreme Court observers from a wide variety of media outlets have recognized in articles and editorials that the Court delivers big wins for corporations when it counts most. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which often supports big business in court against everyday Americans, won 70% of the closely divided cases in which it participated. Wins in Wal-Mart v. Dukes, AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion, and Janus Capital Group v. First Derivative Traders made it more difficult to hold corporations accountable for discrimination and deceit that harm millions of Americans.

Below is a sample of articles in which experienced Supreme Court observers detail the Court’s extreme pro-corporate bias.

Los Angeles Times
The Supreme Court closes the door to justice: Has the Supreme Court lost faith in the American court system? That is a strange question to ask about the justices who sit at the top of the country's judicial hierarchy. But in case after case in the just-completed term, the court, usually in 5-4 decisions with the conservatives in the majority, denied access to the courts.

Los Angeles Times
Supreme Court has given firms a stronger hand: The Supreme Court, which winds up its term Monday, has once again shown itself to be highly skeptical of large lawsuits against big business, regardless of whether the suits are intended to protect workers, consumers or the environment.

New York Times
A Significant Term, With Bigger Cases Ahead: [B]usiness groups won the most consequential cases, including what a U.S. Chamber of Commerce lawyer called “the triple crown of this year’s business docket.”

Roberts Court Wraps up Term, Leaving Significant Conservative Mark: The Supreme Court wrapped up its final cases yesterday, completing a year of action in which its conservative majority left a significant legal mark. In several instances, the high court favored businesses over consumers and employees, most notably in throwing out a class action lawsuit against Wal-Mart.

Analysis: Big business scores key Supreme Court term wins: Giant retailer Wal-Mart Inc, telecommunications company AT&T Inc and coal power companies came out the big winners in the U.S. Supreme Court's just-ended term that rejected large lawsuits against them.

San Francisco Chronicle
Recent U.S. high court rulings favor businesses: Calvin Coolidge once said that the business of America is business. More recently, it's also been the chief business of the nation's highest court. In class actions against Walmart and AT&T, damage suits against drug manufacturers and fraud suits against mutual funds, the Supreme Court's five-member conservative majority issued rulings that insulated corporations from claims by employees, consumers and shareholders.

Operating Instructions: The Supreme Court shows corporate America how to screw over its customers and employees without breaking the law.

USA Today
Supreme Court: 2010-11 term in review: In the 2010-11 term, the majority exerted its power particularly on business cases, favoring big companies over the interests of consumers and employees. It closed off avenues to the courthouse for people suing corporations yet also for taxpayers who challenge government aid to religious schools. And it continued to roll back campaign-finance laws intended to diminish the influence of wealthy interests in elections.

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