America’s technology companies have created huge gains for consumers, developing networks and products that connect the world in ways that were inconceivable just 20 years ago. Yet this progress has not been without its critics. The dominance of large platforms has led to concerns about the harmful effects of lock-in and path dependency, with many arguing the technology sector is unique and requires new approaches to antitrust policy. In particular, it is argued that the consumer welfare standard that guides American antitrust policy is ineffective for regulating Big Tech. Yet with the lack of demonstrable consumer harm, would increased government interventions improve the market?
In Seila Law v. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Supreme Court struck down the CFPB’s leadership structure under a single director that the President cannot remove except for inefficiency, neglect, or malfeasance. But the justices stopped there, leaving the bureau in place, and declined to revisit Humphrey’s Executor more broadly. Nonetheless, the Court’s decision was a victory for separation of powers principles. Our panel of legal and regulatory experts will discuss the implications of the opinion for independent agencies and removal power, as well as what the decision means for consumers.
The Supreme Court interpreted Title VII's prohibition against sex discrimination in employment to encompass discrimination based on sexual orientation or identity. The majority opinion in Bostock v. Clayton County, authored by Justice Neil Gorsuch, relied heavily on the text of the 1964 statute. Too heavily – to the exclusion of legislative intent – some critics say. Our panel of Supreme Court and civil rights experts will discuss whether the Court's opinion was a work of principled textualism or an example of judicial activism.
A Supreme Court term that saw historic firsts—oral argument by telephone and live audio—is drawing to a close. Terms usually end with a bang, and this bang will be louder than most because so many important cases remain undecided. Our panel of Supreme Court experts discusses the Court's impending decisions and the issues on the line, including (to name just a few): What restrictions on abortion are permissible? Do federal discrimination laws apply to gender identity and sexual orientation? Can educational tax credits go to religious schools? And can New York and the U.S. House of Representatives get their hands on President Trump's financial records?
May 25, 2020 marks two years since the landmark General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into force, and European regulators find themselves struggling to enforce a law that has burdened the economy through enormous compliance costs and created more confusion than clarity. Meanwhile in the US, recent concerns over contact tracing and public health data during the COVID-19 pandemic have underscored the tension between a person’s right to privacy and the public’s right to know. What lessons for U.S. policy can be learned through the mistakes of others? Three leading privacy experts take an in-the-trenches look at how our privacy laws work (or don’t), recent failures in the states and abroad, and what is on the horizon as state and feder...
"Created Equal: Clarence Thomas in His Own Words," which tells the story of Clarence Thomas's journey from poverty and segregation in the South to the Supreme Court, debuted on national television last week. To mark the occasion, our panelists—former law clerks for Justice Thomas and the author of Understanding Clarence Thomas: The Jurisprudence of Constitutional Restoration—discuss his nearly thirty years on the Court, his approach to the law, and how his earlier life has shaped his jurisprudence.
How data privacy laws should be enforced remains a key flashpoint in the debates over potential data privacy legislation. Some argue that data protection laws will need a private right of action to have the teeth necessary to prevent consumer harm. What might the consequences of allowing litigation in this area be? What are the implications of the recent storm of litigation in state courts and in the 9th Circuit? And will we see many lawsuits coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic? Our panelists will give an update on recent data privacy litigation and discuss broader trends and implications for privacy law.
On Wednesday, May 6, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing for one of President Donald Trump's most important judicial nominees. Judge Justin Walker, who currently serves on the U.S. District Court in Kentucky, has been nominated to fill one of the infrequent vacancies on the U.S Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, the most important court in the nation after the Supreme Court. The D.C. Circuit hears many of the cases that determine the limits on the authority of the president and executive agencies, and the relationship between the three branches. Because of this court's importance, Senate Democrats and their allies are already fiercely attacking Walker's nomination.