Justice Antonin Scalia wasn’t just the Supreme Court’s pivotal vote on abortion, affirmative action and other social issues. The late conservative jurist was also the linchpin of a multi-year push by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Republican Party to chip away at a central pillar of Democrats’ support: trial lawyers.

The Supreme Court had considered but made no decision in Spokeo vs. Robins prior to his death. That case involved the ability of Congress to allow consumers to sue for damages under federal statutes, even when the harms can’t be explicitly quantified.

The U.S. business lobby lost one of its most valuable players with the passing of Justice Scalia.

“He was a vote I counted on when I was at the Supreme Court,” said Alan Kaplinsky, head of the consumer financial services practice at Ballard Spahr, a Philadelphia-based law firm. “The industry as a whole depended on him.”

Related Practice