The Upcoming Supreme Court Term and the Future of Economic Liberty

Capitol Hill Briefing
September 17, 2010 12:00PM
B-340 Rayburn House Office Building
Featuring Timothy Sandefur, Adjunct Scholar, Cato Institute, Principal Attorney, Pacific Legal Foundation, and author, The Right to Earn a Living: Economic Freedom and the Law; and Ilya Shapiro, Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute, and Editor-in-Chief, Cato Supreme Court Review; moderated by Brandon Arnold, Director of Government Affairs, Cato Institute.

For many people, owning a business is the very definition of the American dream. But in today’s America, that dream is made increasingly difficult by laws and regulations that interfere with entrepreneurs and their right to earn a living providing valuable goods and services through voluntary exchange. The Founding Fathers considered economic liberty to be a fundamental human right, yet the protections established by English law and later American law were largely stripped away by the collectivist political philosophy of Progressive-era judges. What exactly have we lost, and how can it be restored? Can members of the Supreme Court reverse the damage that their predecessors unleashed? Can Congress address these problems effectively or does the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Constitution stand in the way? And what are the prospects that decisions in the next Court term, which begins in October, will advance economic liberty?