Why Trump Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh Is Business’s New Best Friend
Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, is a friend of business.
And that’s exactly what the administration wants to make sure business groups know.
The White House reportedly sent an email to industry stakeholders Monday night, highlighting Kavanaugh’s pro-business and anti-regulation record in an attempt to get their help to push through his nomination. According to Politico, part of the email read, “Judge Kavanaugh protects American businesses from illegal job-killing regulation. Kavanaugh helped kill President Obama’s most destructive new environmental rules.”
In his time serving on the U.S. Court of Appeals for Washington, D.C., Kavanaugh has consistently voted to roll back rules and regulations. He has overruled regulators on cases ranging from consumer protections to net neutrality 75 times and even ruled that the structure of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is unconstitutional.
The CFPB is an independent agency created after the Great Recession with the intention of protecting consumers and avoiding future financial crises. But Kavanaugh wrote in a 2016 opinion that it was “unconstitutionally structured” because it gave too much power to a “single, unaccountable, unchecked” director. That 2-1 ruling did not last, however, as the D.C. Circuit court overturned the decision in January.
Kavanaugh has also written a number of rulings to cut back environmental regulations implemented during the Obama administration and considers net neutrality to be “unlawful.” More broadly, Kavanaugh unwaveringly stands for curbing federal regulations and the power of government agencies.
His positions have suggested a skepticism toward the Chevron doctrine, a precedent that calls for courts to defer to agency interpretations of statutes. Kavanaugh finds such an approach to be “troublingly imprecise and uncertain,” and gives the agencies too much power to decide the statutory interpretation. Overall, a Justice Kavanaugh would likely seek to limit government power—a move that is bound to be popular for business groups.