Since we first launched this news organization, we have sounded the alarm: The corporate takeover of the Supreme Court, helped by Republicans’ malfeasance and Democrats’ incompetence, would have dire consequences. Now the fallout has arrived: Roe v. Wade has been eradicated, and with it, federal protections for abortion rights.
Along with a recap of The Lever’s reporting this week, this edition of Lever Weekly, open to everyone, consolidates all of our relevant coverage related to the Supreme Court and Roe. We offer this round-up as a reminder of the value of building independent news outlets that tell the stories that corporate media refuses to cover.
Stuff The Lever Reported This Week:
• Dark Money Led To This Moment — “A secretive, well-financed dark money network has spent years working to build the Supreme Court’s radical conservative supermajority and bankrolling many of the politicians and organizations involved in the most controversial cases now before the court, including the abortion rights case decided Friday.”
• “The Guns Are Here To Stay” — “The court is probably going to say you can have some training and objective requirements before you let people carry a gun on the street, but you have to provide some mechanism for people to be able to defend themselves. This will be a great expansion of the Second Amendment. In over 200 years of history, the Supreme Court has never said that.”
• Biden Taps Anti-Social Security Ideologue To Oversee Program — “Last month, President Joe Biden nominated a longtime advocate of Social Security privatization and benefit cuts to a key board overseeing the Social Security system… The development suggests that there could soon be a coordinated push in Washington to cut the Social Security program, which provides retirement, disability, and survivor benefits to 66 million Americans.”
• The Health Crisis In Joe Manchin’s Backyard — “In early June, Charles Combs traveled 50 miles to attend a free pop-up health clinic in Charleston, West Virginia, to have some teeth extracted… ‘I’ve been doing them myself,’ Combs said. ‘I’ve been offing them out with a hammer and a knotter.’”
• Hochul's Stadium Swindle — “The arrangement doesn’t merely illustrate Hochul’s penchant for prioritizing business interests over marginalized New Yorkers. It is also the latest iteration of New York siphoning revenues from the Seneca Nation and trampling the tribe’s exclusive gaming rights.”
• YOU LOVE TO SEE IT: A President Takes On Climate Change — “Together, Petro and Márquez have a vision to reorganize Colombia’s economy to combat climate change and dismantle its dependence on fossil fuels.”
Stuff To Watch And Listen To:
• LEVER TIME PODCAST: The Social Security Chopping Block (also, NY Dems Don’t Care About Climate) — On this week’s Lever Time: David Sirota discusses Lindsey Graham’s comments on cutting Social Security and Medicare; Andrew Perez visits a pop-up medical clinic in Joe Manchin’s home state; and Julia Rock explores why New York Dems recently killed a renewable energy bill.
• LEVER LIVE: How To Build A Third Party Q&A — Due to the cataclysmic failures of the two-party system here in the United States, is it time to build a real third party — if that is even possible?
• LEVER TIME PREMIUM PODCAST: The Right-Wing Tide May Be Turning — In this week’s episode of Lever Time Premium, our extended weekly podcast for supporting subscribers, Sirota delves into recent progressive victories around the world and whether they bode well for the international left.
• Abort the Court (District Sentinel) — The Lever’s Andrew Perez speaks with the District Sentinel about Leonard Leo and how his dark money network moved the Supreme Court far to the right.
Our Past Coverage Of The Supreme Court And Roe:
• The Supreme Court Is A Corporate Star Chamber (June 26, 2020) — “Once again, the high court used business cases to fortify the power of the already-powerful. I say ‘once again’ because for all the focus on the court’s rulings on important social issues, much of the justices’ work is on business litigation — and in that role, the court now serves as a reliable star chamber defending corporations and the wealthy.”
• John Roberts Is Following Corporate America’s Long-Term Plan (July 2, 2020) — “In an age when our public memory typically lasts about 15 minutes or less, even fewer seem to remember that this society-changing judicial shift is part of a longer-term plan that Roberts and his corporate allies have been methodically catalyzing for 15 years.”
• How A New Supreme Court Could Forever Change America (Sept. 23, 2020) — “You would have a very strong 6-3 conservative majority. And unlike previous times where conservatives had most of the seats on the court, none of the conservatives on (this) court really swing liberal on business or corporate power issues.”
• We Still Don’t Know Who Is Paying For Trump’s SCOTUS Seats (Sept. 29, 2020) — “JCN is the darkest of dark money groups. While nonprofits aren’t required to publicly reveal their donors, some contributor names generally drip out over time — usually in tax returns filed by other nonprofits, or in voluntary political contribution disclosures by big corporations. That hasn’t happened with JCN.”
• Dems Have A SCOTUS Opportunity Tomorrow — Will They Use It? (Oct. 4, 2020) — “The first rule of Democratic Fight Club should be: Don’t ever do what Mitch McConnell wants you to do. On Monday, we will see if Senate Democrats understand that rule yet. They will have a rare opportunity to use their power to try to complicate McConnell’s plan to confirm Donald Trump’s third Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett.”
NEW PODCAST: The Social Security Chopping Block
On this week’s Lever Time: David Sirota discusses Lindsey Graham’s comments on cutting Social Security and Medicare; Andrew Perez visits a pop-up medical clinic in Joe Manchin’s home state; and Julia Rock explores why New York Dems recently killed a renewable energy bill.
• Why Big Money Wants Barrett On The Supreme Court (Oct. 5, 2020) — “Mitch McConnell understands that if he can place Amy Coney Barrett on the Supreme Court, his party can lose the presidential election, but still win the GOP’s long-term battle to shift policy to the hard right.”
• Corporate Media Camouflages The Corporate Court (June 24, 2021) — “In this long game, the objective is to foreclose on even the possibility of justice. After all, once the courthouse doors are nailed shut, courts throughout the judicial system won’t even have to decide whether to side with corporate interests — because they won’t even have to hear the complaints brought by workers, shareholders, and anyone else who doesn’t have political power.”
• Dems Stalled Abortion Protections In A Committee (Sept. 2, 2021) — “Since the Roe decision in 1973, Democrats in Washington have never bothered to codify the precedent as a federal law, even when they have held both houses of Congress and the presidency… The same story has now unfolded during the first seven months of the Biden presidency, allowing Texas Republicans and Supreme Court extremists to take advantage of the negligence.”
• The Anti-Abortion Crusade For The Filibuster (Jan. 13, 2022) — “The right-wingers promoting the filibuster have been fully transparent about their goal: They want to block a federal voting rights law so they can elect more anti-choice politicians and to protect the Supreme Court’s conservative supermajority that’s threatening abortion rights. It’s one more piece of evidence that defending the filibuster isn’t about preserving a rarified legislative tradition — it’s all about rigging the game to maximize conservatives’ power.”
• How Pro-Business “Law And Economics” Interests Pushed The Courts Right (March 9, 2022) — “A newly updated academic preprint details the success of the so-called “law and economics” movement, which seeks to apply free-market principles to legal analysis, and how it used all-expense-paid conferences bankrolled by corporate interests to indoctrinate a generation of judges — particularly in cases involving regulatory agencies, like the EPA.”
• Why Are Dems Boosting An Anti-Abortion Candidate? (May 9, 2022) — “A new super PAC led by consultants for Joe Biden, Barack Obama, and Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaigns is diving into a Texas primary to support a conservative Democrat who opposes abortion.”
• The Roe Disaster — And What To Do About It (May 4, 2022) — “Democrats, presumably the pro-choice party, still control the executive and legislative branches, as well as many state governments across the country. If there’s one lesson to act upon right now, it’s that they must actually use the power of the government to fund abortion access and protect basic freedoms — something that, incidentally, might be more encouraging to the party’s base than telling them to just keep voting blue, but even harder.”
• McCarthy-Era Law Aimed At Pro-Choice Protesters (May 12, 2022) — “Prominent Republican lawmakers, conservative operatives, and Beltway pundits are demanding the government arrest demonstrators — and to do so, they are citing a McCarthy-era statute passed to stop people from protesting the prosecutions of alleged communists. Ignored in the discourse is a past ruling from the Supreme Court effectively blessing conservative protests at the homes of abortion clinic workers.”