Just three months after Romney proclaimed that “corporations are people,” he has pledged to ensure that the Supreme Court will continue to share this delusion. During editorial board meeting yesterday, Romney promised that if he is elected, he will model his Supreme Court picks after corporate America’s most favorite justices:
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said if he had the opportunity to appoint a Supreme Court justice he or she would be in the mold of Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Chief Justice John Roberts.
“Their approach is the approach I would encourage,” he said. “I would try to find those who would follow the Constitution.
Setting aside the obvious tension between Romney’s promise to appoint justices like Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, or Alito and his promise to appoint justices who will “follow the Constitution,” it’s important to note exactly what Romney is endorsing by supporting these four justices:
- More Corporate Money In Elections: Every single one of Romney’s model justices were in the majority in Citizens United. That means that every single one of them believes that wealthy corporations should have a nearly unlimited power to buy and sell American elections. Every single one of them also voted to undermine public financing laws in a way that eviscerates candidates without well-moneyed backers’ ability to compete in elections.
- Judges For Sale: Every single one of Romney’s model justices voted in Caperton v. Massey to allow a wealthy coal CEO to pay $3 million to elect a sympathetic justice to a state supreme court in order to stack that court with jurists who would overturn a $50 million verdict against his company.
- Corporate-Owned Courts: Every single one of Romney’s model justices voted to give corporations a nearly unlimited power to force workers and consumers into a privatized, corporate-run arbitration system that overwhelming favors corporations. Under their vision, real courts run by neutral judges are off limits to anyone a clever corporation does business with.
- Dividing And Conquering Ordinary Americans: Every single one of Romney’s model justices voted in AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion to allow corporations to strip their workers and consumers of their ability to bring class action lawsuits. Because of this decision, corporations now have a nearly unlimited power to cheat the people who do business with them — so long as they only do it a few dollars at a time.
- Corporate Immunity To The Law: Every single one of Romney’s model justices voted to give generic drug makers immunity to key state laws after one of their drugs caused a condition called tardive dyskinesia in many of the people who took it. Tardive dyskinesia is an horrific neurological condition that causes sometimes crippling, uncontrollable bodily movements, often in the face:
Roberts, Scalia, Thomas and Alito envision an America where elections are decided by the highest bidder, where corporations control the courts, and where ordinary Americans have to beg corporate permission before they can hold the wealthiest companies accountable to the law. And if Mitt Romney gets his way, there will be even more of them on the Supreme Court.