The current Supreme Court is the most business-friendly of all time. That’s the clear message of a major new article looking at court decisions between 1921 and 2020.
Why It Matters: Over the past 70 years, government in general — not just the judiciary, but also the Democratic and Republican parties — have adopted an increasingly pro-business agenda.
State of Play: When the court heard a case featuring a business on one side and a non-business on the other, it ruled in favor of the business 83% of the time in 2020, and 63% of the time John Roberts has been President of the Supreme Court.
By the numbers: The six justices with the most business-friendly voting records of all time are sitting in court right now. These six (Barrett, Kavanaugh, Gorsuch, Alito, Roberts and Thomas) were nominated by Republican presidents.
How it works: To some extent, judges can be seen to follow the example of the government.
Between the lines: While high-profile cases like Citizens United or the Hobby Lobby get most of the news coverage, the Roberts court has been particularly active when it comes to upholding arbitration clauses (in favor of corporations) and rejecting lawsuits collective in the securities industry. (which companies invariably oppose).
The bottom line: Expect the pro-business stance to continue for the foreseeable future, especially now that Republican-nominated justices make up a 6-3 majority on the court.