Here’s just one way Trump’s SCOTUS pick will cost us money

From CBS News Moneywatch on Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee:

If he takes a seat on the Supreme Court, his vote could weaken consumer protections and favor expanded corporate rights, say pro-consumer advocates. Indeed, Kavanaugh’s business bona fides were touted by the White House to the business community, describing him as “protect[ing] American businesses from illegal job-killing regulation,” according to Politico.

Consumers might feel the shift to a more conservative court through rulings that could reduce the authority of watchdogs like the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau or strip away healthcare for people with pre-existing conditions. To be sure, reducing regulations could have the benefit of lowering costs for businesses and their customers, but such decisions could also shift costs to consumers.

“His record is clear — when given the choice he has sided with Wall Street special interests over consumers time and time again,” said Karl Frisch, executive director of Allied Progress, a left-leaning watchdog group, in an email to CBS MoneyWatch. “Most notably he ruled the CFPB’s structure was unconstitutional in 2016 — a position cheered on by Wall Street and conservative activists but soundly rejected by his colleagues on the D.C. Circuit Court who reversed his decision.”

His appointment “will cost consumers and investors more money.”

Kavanaugh overruled regulators 75 times on cases that spanned from net neutrality to consumer protections, the White House said in the letter sent to business groups.

If I go into more detail, you’ll get bored and stop reading. But I can assure you that Kavanaugh has a well-documented bias against Obamacare, and intends to overturn it if given the opportunity.

That will cost all of us more money — including those of you who have insurance through your job. It will drive up everyone’s costs, and it will also strip your family of pre-existing condition protection.

See what I mean? It’s all political.

Welcome to CUFF. Here’s our story.

If there’s one thing that makes me furious, it’s some giant corporation screwing us out of our hard-earned money. Whether it’s the local cable provider, the cell phone carrier, a shady landlord, a mortgage company, or a department store, companies are using some sleazy, slimy tactics to get rich at our expense.

I’ve been involved in politics since I was 15, and worked on my first campaign. I also spent 20 years as a journalist, 10 years in sales, and 15 years as one of the first progressive bloggers. I’ve been going out on a limb for a long time.

One of the most frustrating things for me is when I meet people who tell me, “Oh, I’m not political.” To me, that’s the sign of someone who doesn’t understand everything is political: “Oh, I don’t care who’s on the Supreme Court.”

Well, you should. Every single Republican who sits on the highest court in the land has a long and reliable record of ruling against consumers, and for corporations. And if we don’t wake up and recognize that, we will continue to get taken.

CUFF is not going to focus our work on individual cases. Our purpose will be to shine a light on the many, many ways big corporations use their influence to take our money and sell us unsafe products — and when our membership gets large enough, to use our influence to protect consumers at the federal level.

We also want to educate you about the forces working against us, and hopefully inspire you to get involved.

Although we make no bones about the fact that we’re Democrats, we criticize Democrats, too. We want to fight on your behalf.

Our founding principle is, we’re not going to seek or take money from big donors. We’ve seen too many promising organizations pull punches because it might jeopardize their funding. (You’d be shocked at how often that happens.)

We hope to be funded by members who see the usefulness of paying $10 a year to support our work. Most people don’t have the time or expertise to do the kind of research and identify the context the way we do.

That said, we do want engaged members who are partners. When we ask you to call your elected representatives, or sign a petition, we are asking you to help us grow in influence — influence we can use on behalf of you, and all consumers.


Susan Madrak