American Sustainable Business Council: “It is essential that we have a court that can make decisions that will stand as precedent.”
“America faces a number of structural challenges, from rising inequality to falling productivity, from climate change to dysfunctional political and civic institutions. These questions need to be answered so we can preserve what is best about the power of markets while addressing the growing problems in our current system. Many of those questions are coming to the Supreme Court, and it is essential that we have a court that can make decisions that will stand as precedent.
“Our view is that the American people, in electing senators and a president, have made their views known. We believe they can—and should—continue to do so during the nomination process. But for the sake of solving these pressing issues facing the business community, we call on the Senate to begin the nomination process required under the Constitution, give the president’s nominee a fair hearing, and ultimately, cast an up-or-down vote.
“At this time we do not take a position on Judge Garland as a nominee. As with many other observers, we hope to learn more about his positions on crucial issues like the environment, campaign finance, and others in open, public hearings. However, it is clear to us that the Constitution requires action from the president and the Senate when a seat on any court is vacant. A seat on the Supreme Court is vacant. It must be filled.” [ASBC, 3/17/16]
US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce: “As the highest court in the nation, the Supreme Court should be above politics. It stands to reason that the confirmation of one of its justices should also be free from political games.” Statement from USHCC President and CEO Javier Palomarez:
“The USHCC strongly supports the nomination of Merrick Garland for the United States Supreme Court.
“As the highest court in the nation, the Supreme Court should be above politics. It stands to reason that the confirmation of one of its justices should also be free from political games.
“Although Republican senators on the Judiciary Committee have announced their intention of opposing Garland's confirmation, the USHCC urges them to reconsider their stance. Any President has the constitutional right to appoint a Supreme Court justice during the remainder of his presidency. This seat should not and cannot be left vacant until the next Presidential Administration.
“Pending Supreme Court cases addressing some of the most pressing issues of our time, such as immigration, public education and healthcare, will be heard in the near future. The Senate must stand on the right side of history, fulfill its legislative duties, and confirm a Supreme Court justice without drama or delay.
“As the Chief Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Garland is a devoted public servant with a track record of success. He is a strong, bipartisan choice for the Supreme Court.
“Throughout his career, Garland has long been considered a persuasive centrist voice on some of issues most important to the American small business community, including national security and the environment. The son of small business owners, he understands the challenges and opportunities of entrepreneurialism. The USHCC looks forward to his swift confirmation in the upcoming weeks.” [Marketwired, 3/17/16]
U.S. Black Chambers: “President Obama fulfilled his constitutional responsibility by nominating to the Supreme Court an eminently qualified candidate who deserves a fair hearing.”
“Throughout the entire duration of President Obama's presidency we've witnessed a defiant, dysfunctional and divided Congress unwilling to work together, let alone support the commander in chief,” said USBC President Ron Busby. “It's no surprise Congress is yet again defiant and in opposition to President Obama's Supreme Court nomination. The reality is Chief Judge Merrick Garland has more federal judicial experience than any other Supreme Court nominee in history. No one is more qualified to immediately serve on the Supreme Court. As the voice and advocate for Black business owners, we believe President Obama's Supreme Court nomination is the best choice to continue to move America forward.” [U.S. Black Chambers, 3/17/16]
South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce: “The NFIB does not represent all small businesses,” says the American Sustainable Business Council.
“Today on Fox News Sunday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is quoted as saying, ‘I can’t imagine that a Republican majority in the United States Senate would want to confirm, in a lame duck session, a nominee opposed by the National Rifle Association, the National Federation of Independent Business that represents small businesses.’
“In a joint statement David Levine, CEO of the American Sustainable Business Council, and Frank Knapp Jr., co-chair of the American Sustainable Business Council, gives the following comment.
“‘The time has come for all politicians to stop using the National Federation of Independent Business as the only representative of small business. Hundreds of thousands of small business leaders believe that we must move beyond partisan politics and appoint the next Supreme Court judge now. When a business loses a CEO, we move quickly to replace him or her. Too many important issues for business and the economy rest on having a full Supreme Court, so we implore Congress to act now.’” [SC Small Business Chamber of Commerce, 3/20/16]
Business Forward: “More than 70 business leaders from across the country expressed frustration that the Senate has yet to meet with the nominee or schedule hearings for his confirmation.”
“One week after President Obama nominated Chief Judge of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court, more than 70 business leaders from across the country expressed frustration that the Senate has yet to meet with the nominee or schedule hearings for his confirmation.
“According to legal experts, the potential for a lengthy period without a ninth justice could increase uncertainty on several key business issues, including healthcare, immigration, unions and small business contracting.
“Some business leaders spoke of the need for stability to operate their businesses effectively. Others expressed frustration that, while they go to work every day and do their job, the Senate was not meeting its constitutionally mandated role of advising and consenting to the President’s nominee for the Supreme Court. Several business leaders argued that gridlock in Washington reflects poorly U.S businesses during interactions with international peers.
“Below is a sample of quotes from small business owners, entrepreneurs, investors, and senior executives:
“There are cases that concern contracting that should be heard by SCOTUS,” said Regina Colston, CEO of Colston Consultants in Huntsville, Ala. “If our institutions are unable to function, business cannot do business.”
“The vacancy leads to uncertainty and thus impacts the markets and weighs on business decisions, perhaps delaying them or deflecting progress,” said Susan Shultz, President of SSA Executive Search International, INAC Global and The Board Institute in Paradise Valley, Ariz. “It is the President's responsibility to nominate and Congress' responsibility to advise. I don't believe it is appropriate to wait for the next President to appoint.”
“A vacancy in the Supreme Court would not have an immediate impact on our business activity,” said Mike Barclay, Director of Business Development at SHIPHAUS in Mesa, Ariz. “The position should carefully be offered to one that has profound knowledge of our constitutional rights, and will respectively continue to honor them when making incredibly important decisions for our country and citizens.”
“Our concern with this vacancy relates to the message being sent by our legislators,” said Rosemary Dom, a retired RN at Engineering and Equipment Company in Kindman, Ariz.
“How would a business expect to grow if it refused to recognize the importance of healthy cooperation and compromise?”
“Without a ruling on the Clean Power Plan, and carbon regulations we may be subjected to burdensome regulations imposed by heavily conservative states,” said Brandon Cheshire, Owner of SunHarvest Solar in Phoenix. “We need SCOTUS to make a decision.”
“In the past several years, the SCOTUS has issued several important patent law opinions. There are several more that are pending. It is critical for my clients to know the state of the law,” said Bruce Greenhaus, Partner at Greenhaus & Pendergrass, LLP in San Diego.
“Not knowing who the 9th Justice will be creates uncertainty regarding the state of the patent laws. Therefore, the sooner the vacancy is filled, the more certainty for my clients.”
“Our business community, especially small businesses, is suffering from a dysfunctional judicial system that is based on a pay to play system. We need to fix this problem from the top down to provide for economic equality,” said Ray Bishop, Los Angeles County Small Business Commissioner and Chair of the California Democratic Party’s Business & Professional Caucus in Los Angeles. “We need a fully functional judicial system to protect our business community as well as our principle of ‘equal justice under the law.’”
“Most importantly, this politicization of the Supreme Court is symbolically significant to those who look to the U.S. for leadership. For us who are based in the United States and do international work, this situation causes concern among our foreign partners,” said Jonathan Beutler, Managing Director at Pacific Rim Global Advisory in Manhattan Beach, Calif. “They view this political gridlock as possibly having a long-term negative impact on the U.S. ability to lead on the global stage.”
“The supreme court justice is a lifetime appointment and should be treated as such. This is a non-partisan responsibility and should be held by the most qualified individual, not one whose vote will be counted on by one party or another,” said Phillip Kopp, CEO of Conectric Networks in San Diego. “Any justice will likely work through various political terms and party majorities throughout their appointment. It is in the interest of business, the American people, and pending trials to resolve the Supreme Court vacancy in the most efficient and expedient way possible, including consideration of the appointment made legally by our current President. Unless based on true merits, further delays are unreasonable.”
“Vacancies on the U.S. Supreme Court could result in delays on critical trade and intellectual property decisions,” said Bob Nelson, San Diego Port Commissioner and California Film Commissioner in San Diego. “Hopefully the U.S. Senate will approve the appointment of a new Justice, not put our economy on hold for a year while they play politics.”
“Senator Grassley said the president shouldn’t nominate a Supreme Court justice because the people should have a say in who makes that decision when they go to the polls in November,” said Carol Leslie Hamilton, Attorney at the Law Office of Carol Leslie Hamilton in Beverly Hills, Calif. “Americans had their say in 2012 when they re-elected President Obama to carry out the constitutional duties of the presidency. Those duties include putting forth a qualified nominee whenever a vacancy on the Supreme Court occurs. The Senate’s refusal to consider Judge Garland’s nomination is a dereliction of their constitutional duty and nullifies the votes cast by millions of Americans.”
“Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid stated that it is "unprecedented in recent history for the Supreme Court to go a year with a vacant seat.” The seat should be filled by nominee Merrick Garland,” said Brigette Hunley, President of BHC in Fairfield, Calif. “A seat left vacant creates instability and instability is bad for business.”
“As a lawyer who represents businesses throughout California, it is imperative that the Senate act on President Obama's SCOTUS nomination,” said Darryl Horowitt, Partner at Coleman & Horowitt, LLP in Fresno, Calif. “This is not about politics but about allowing the most important court in the nation to do its business as the Constitution intended."
“Small businesses need dynamic stability for us to grow. Not ‘uncertainty,’” said Peter Wong, CEO of Sunrise Shoes in Orangevale, Calif.
“The uncertainty on a well-balanced court is not fair to organizations. The rule of law must prevail, and the Senate should do its job on proposing a vote, whatever the outcome,” said Luis Robles, CEO of Robles AerialZeus, LLC in Sacramento, Calif. “If they do not do their job, as we in private industry do, we will fire them all in the next elections.”
“Business would like to plan around a set situation. What it will be is not as important as knowing what is in place for the long term,” said Luis Eternod, Director of Marketing and Sales at Pacific Aviation and Lease Management in San Diego. “Having the nine justices in place is what the long term has been historically. The sooner this is resolved better. The uncertainty is the worst scenario for any business.”
“The message being sent by the leadership of congress is a dangerous one,” said Ellee Koss, Founder of ISYS.net – High Performance Consulting in San Francisco. “As role models, your actions are legitimizing a way of acting that is consistent with a disregard for responsibility and respect for rules. Please act accordingly and appropriately and move the nomination forward.”
“Uncertainty is bad for business. A prolonged vacancy on the court not only leaves many issues potentially unresolved over two Supreme Court terms, but the failure of the Senate to act also unsettles our international clients and their investors,” said Jeff Bleich, CEO of Dentons Diplomatic Solutions in San Francisco. “They respect the impartiality of our bench; when the Court's efforts can be limited or delayed for political reasons, it shakes their faith in our system.”
“Legal uncertainties are anathema to doing business,” said Brandon Baum, Adjunct Professor of Law at University of California Hastings in San Francisco. “The Senate should advise and either consent or decline to consent to the President's nominee."
“The discord in politics adversely impacts the financial markets and increases unnecessary concern for our clients both domestically and internationally,” said Greg Wendt, Co-Founder of Living Economy Advisors in Santa Monica, Calif. “Additionally, the tarnished image of America makes it more difficult to get overseas wealth management clients.”
“We need nine justices as our founding fathers wisely ordained. Given a prolonged 4-4 deadlock, vital questions about our nation’s laws and the Constitution will be left unanswered,” said Steven Wilburn, FirmGreen, Inc. CEO in Newport Beach, Calif.
“Local laws being considered on appeal by the Supreme Court that can materially impact my business will likely remain different from one state to the next. This will result in confusion and additional legal compliance expenses.”
“Disruptive innovation at grassroots level by American entrepreneurs inherently requires a belief in fairness and stability of American system at the highest level,” said Somair Riaz, CEO of Skindroid, Inc. in Aurora, Colo. “I do hope, and would like to believe, that the esteemed leaders at the helm are well aware of this enormous responsibility.”
“My company generates over half of its revenues from exports, and in our globalized world, an intelligent, responsive and respected national government is a key part of our competitive equation,” said Ski Milburn, CEO of VAIREX Air Systems in Boulder, Colo. “A Supreme Court that deadlocks in a series of tie votes, or a Senate that refuses to act on nominations, degrades that position in the eyes of our global customers.”
District of Columbia
“Businesspeople must handle market place risks daily,” said Paula Stern, Founder & Chairwoman of The Stern Group, Inc. in Washington. “Congress should not add more risk to the economy by keeping a vacancy at one of the three branches of federal government.”
"Vacancies, whether in business or government, need to be filled. A vacuum is created when they are not. Decisions that are indecisive serve no one well. Such is the case with SCOTUS,” said Felicia Bruce, CEO of Spirit Enterprises in Fort Pierce, Fla. “Besides setting a bad business model example, the lower court vacancies have already delayed justice and created a monumental backlog of cases. All of this compounds small business challenges such as mine."
“A vacancy on the Supreme Court has profound influence on laws that govern businesses in the United States,” said William von Zangenberg, CEO of Computerbility Software Trainers in Holiday, Fla. “Leaving the judgeship empty is an atrocity to our system of law and should not be allowed. Make the Senate do their jobs.”
“I don't believe that a vacancy on the Supreme Court will affect my business of real estate directly, however it will further erode the confidence of investors from other countries who look to us as a model of the democratic process and governmental stability,” said John Dohm, President of Florida Transatlantic Holdings, LLC in Miami.
“While it is very necessary for the U.S. Senate to have utmost discretion in the choice of a Supreme Court appointment, we need less division and more bipartisan support from our judicial system for the sake of social and business progress,” said Astrid F. Kowlessar, Director of Vezta Co. in Miami. “Thus, we ask the U.S. Senate to give consideration to the President’s nomination of Merrick Garland.”
“The Constitution gives our President four-year terms with full authority to perform the duties required by the position. One of those duties is the appointment of Supreme Court justices when there is a vacancy. The Senate has a duty then to hold hearings and confirm or deny the nominee,” said Millie Herrera, Owner and CEO of the Miami Group in Miami. “Businesses need a stable social and economic climate in order to thrive. An unbalanced government creates instability, therefore it's in our best interest for the Senate to do its constitutional duty and leave partisan politics out, for the good of the nation and business stability."
“We need to ensure that every government body, including the Supreme Court, is fully functional all the time,” said Alexander Rahe, CEO and Partner of Solarize, LLC in Miami Beach, Fla. “We cannot delay the nomination, because the Supreme Court needs to be in the position to resolve issues. By the time they get cases it's normally been a long time already.”
“The Senate has a constitutional obligation to advise and consent. The refusal of certain Republican members to meet with the President's nominee, conduct fair hearings, and schedule an up-or-down vote is an affront to the citizens that elected them to serve,” said Andrew Weinstein, Managing Partner at Weinstein Law Firm in Pompano Beach, Fla.
“With more than 300 days remaining in the President's term there is plenty of time for the Senate to do its job.”
“Having been born in Kentucky, I am embarrassed by the behavior of Senator McConnell. Failing to grant a fair hearing to the nominee is unacceptable behavior, there are many important matters that are going to be brought in front of the court, the empty seat issue makes for uncertainty in the business climate not only domestically but internationally,” said Marvin Scaff, CTO of myNFO in Tampa, Fla. “This brinksmanship and holding the hearing hostage until the next POTUS is elected would be grounds for termination if the congressman had a real job and were able to be held accountable to his constituents."
“A prolonged vacancy on the Supreme Court destabilizes our entire system of checks and balances and calls into question the validity of our legal system,” said V. Weeks, Principal of Weeks Consulting in Savannah, Ga. “Businesses need clear and unambiguous laws in order to effectively function and paralyzing the Supreme Court with partisan gamesmanship does nothing to further that cause.”
“I am an attorney, and having the potential for a split Supreme Court (which results in lower courts' decisions standing but having no nationwide precedential value) for over a year can be a disaster for my business clients,” said Kelcey Patrick-Ferree, a Principal at the Law Office of Kelvey Patrick-Ferree in Iowa City, Ia. “Businesses thrive in a stable climate. It is not possible to figure out how to comply with the law, get a compliance regime set, and get down to business, when it is not possible to know for certain what the law says or worse, when it is clear that it is not possible to follow the same law in two different jurisdictions at the same time.”
“The American economy is just beginning to truly recover and stability is of vital importance,” said Margaret Wilson, Director of Research and Development at Taj Development Company, Inc. in Chicago. “Delays in court decisions will add to the uncertain and cannot be tolerated. We need a justice now.”
“I think it would be a very good choice. He is a man with great judgment and many other characteristics that would make him a great choice in a job that that needs him. The seat shouldn't be left empty when our nation needs him,” said Richard Dodson, Owner of Litchfield Cc in Litchfield, Ill.
“I am not convinced that a delay will have a material impact on the venture community--entrepreneurs will find a way. But ironically, those promoting a delay are reinforcing the image that the current polarized political climate is unacceptable,” said Todd Saxton, an Associate Professor at Indiana University Kelley School of Business and former president of Venture Club of Indianapolis in Indianapolis. “It is these concerns that drive favoring ‘outside’ or non-establishment candidates who are promoting the idea that America is broken. The implications of this are far more concerning than the Supreme Court implications.”
“Uncertainty in rulings on ACA (I cover premiums for all of my staff, including dental) leaves our insurers and us unable to rely on future coverage. It is a major benefit my company offers its 10 employees. There’s also uncertainty on EPA clean water rules, which directly affects the environmental planning and design work we offer,” said Dana Brown, President of Dana Brown & Associates in New Orleans. “How do I recommend strategies to my clients when decisions are so fluid?"
“Uncertainty is always a concern. Given the current debate about filling the vacancy in the Supreme Court before the fall elections, there is no certainty when the Senate will confirm an appointee,” said Barry White, former Ambassador to Norway and senior partner at Foley Hoag, LLP, from Newton Center, Mass. “Indeed, it could be many months after the election before someone is confirmed. The Senate should do its job, confirm an appointee soon, and let us get back to business.”
“A business leader has to make decisions and keep moving ahead. Stalling is not an option,” said Alison Levy, Director of The Stable, LLC in Chilmark, Mass. “Repeated attempts to stall the forward movement of society harms entrepreneurship, initiative, and the economy.”
“The question that my overseas counterparts ask is ‘why would our legislative branch intentionally destabilize our country's judicial branch?’” said Alan Maddox, Managing Partner at Pacific AgTrade in Baltimore. “The Republican's contention that the nomination should be put forth by a president elected by the people, when there is already a president in office that was elected by the people, raises concerns about whether our country will continue as the standard bearer for transparency and rule of law.”
“More than anything, an impasse on confirmation validates to investors foreign and domestic that the infection of polarizing ideologies is rotting the foundation of our democracy,” said Jay Steinmetz, CEO of Barcoding, Inc. in Baltimore.
“Business abhors uncertainty and indecision. Congress should vote on the nomination of Judge Garland,” said Mark Rice, President of Maritime Applied Physics Corporation in Curtis Bay, Md.
“Decisions by our nation’s highest court effect the cost of doing business significantly at small and medium-sized companies and hurts communities in dire need of economic growth where small and medium-sized businesses play a key role,” said Joe Reddix, President and CEO of The Reddix Group, LLC in Hanover, Md. “Holding up an excellent nominee such as D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court sends a bitter message to aspiring entrepreneurs who see the potential of split-decisions that the court may face as additional risk in doing strategy and business development both domestically and globally. Cleary, the existing business environment does not need additional uncertainty in planning, scheduling and implementation of their respective business plans brought on by a less that full strength Supreme Court.”
“I get up in the morning feeling like I'm making a contribution to my country, my employees and the economy,” said Wendy Rosen, Founder of American Made Show in Baltimore. “It makes me both angry and sad that members of Congress don't understand that obstruction is not a contribution. It only angers Americans more.”
“Business suffers when regulatory and judicial questions are unsettled, especially in an agitated political environment,” said Dudley Greeley, Owner of D.F. Greeley Conservation in Center, Me. “My high-end art conservation business deals with largely discretionary treatment options that can be particularly subject to being ‘put on hold’ in uncertain times. Please do not further politicize confirmation of Presidential appointments.”
“We can't have the highest court in the land diminished by a vacancy that pushes cases to lower courts - as we have already seen,” said Paul Savage, CEO of Nextek Power in Detroit. “This undermines the confidence the business community needs to have in the ultimate fairness in our legal system.”
“Many important Supreme Court cases and pending decisions involve helping diverse populations and minority underserved Americans. The political process should not be allowed to keep ‘the people’s’ long hard fought decisions to be held in limbo awaiting fair equitable reviews by a full 9 Justices, said Ty Faulkner, Chief Office of Rural Health IT in Canton, Mich. “As a leader involved in building healthcare technology companies for the underserved communities, I admonish quick action to fill any Supreme Court vacancies at any time regardless of party affiliation within a reasonable time frame as necessary to find the right candidate. I'm sure all of our elected congressional and executive branch leaders have their hearts and intentions focused on this effort so I wish them all ‘God's Speed’ to settle this important matter soon.”
“Failing to act on the Supreme Court nomination is a gross failure in governing; it demonstrates an inability to compromise in doing what is in the best interest of the country and greatly undermines the confidence in our government,” said Charles Moret, President of Invest Michigan in Detroit.
“This is disgusting. More posturing in Washington that signals to the rest of the country that our leadership is out of touch with the mainstream, said Margaret Fizgerald, Chief Financial Officer of Allied Rethink Ink in Ferndale, Mich. “A delay in the Supreme Court nomination and vetting process contributes to the uncertainty that is already rampant. As CFO and a member of the executive management team at my company, integrity is my most important asset. Clearly the Republican leadership doesn't think the way I do.”
“The biggest challenge facing many companies today--- including our organization's 1000 members--- is a lack of economic predictability in terms of how current and pending rules, regulations, and taxes will impact the future of their businesses,” said Noel Nevshehir, Director of International Business at Automation Alley in Troy, Mich. “The extent to which this can be influenced by the next Supreme Court Justice, for better or worse, remains to be seen.”
“As a healthcare IT startup, we need to have clarity and stability on the legal front, said Abir Sen, CEO of Gravie in Minneapolis. “A vacancy on the Supreme Court potentially puts that in jeopardy, and could dampen innovation in one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy.”
“How am I supposed to make financial, employment, and contractual decisions with confidence when the business fabric of the nation is so easily rewoven on political whimsy?” said Louise Noeth, Principal at LandSpeed Productions in St. Louis. “Who arbitrarily decided that the Supreme Court is part of some political toolbox? Elected officials are charged with the primary duty of keeping this nation running at operational efficiency, not posturing for a better outcome by exploiting the very process that got them their job."
“The political process is one of the greatest systems of checks and balances developed by our founding fathers, however when the legislative and executive branches of government refuse to honor the process, it creates a problem in other areas, especially the business community,” said Marco Moran, CEO of Dewmar International BMC, Inc. in Clinton, Miss. “The Supreme Court has to have the additional member as soon as possible, because if he is not replaced it will have a negative impact on the business community. The business community has started to rethink its strategy and gear up for the impact. In my opinion, this unnecessary delay of voting on the acceptance of the President's nominee will create pause within the business community to reinvest its profits or to expand its business practices because of its lack of faith in our most fundamental systems. The long-term implications is a loss of U.S. based jobs. We should get back to the business of moving America forward without any further frivolous delays.”
"Business suffers under uncertainty--that's why it's better to do business in the United States instead of an unstable developing country. Playing politics with the Supreme Court creates uncertainty and really smacks of a banana republic where business waits for political theater instead of staying focused on creating growth and jobs,” said Rich Deming, Managing Partner of Power Resource Group, LLC in Kannapolis, N.C. “We--the business people of the United States--can create jobs under any regulatory environment, as long as we know the rules. The ongoing gridlock over this and other issues makes the rules unknowable. It's both irritating and embarrassing, and it directly hurts the job- and wealth-creators of this country."
“The obstruction from the House and Senate causes despair for all. We need everyone working together for a common good. If the House and Senate refuse to do their job, they should resign and allow us to have Senators and Representative who know who to get work done, not extremists who do nothing for anyone but greed,” said Ann Lane, President of Carolina Investigative Research in Cary, N.C. “Business owners work every day. If we decided not to work until the time was right, our businesses would close.”
“I am deeply concerned that business owners from the United States will be hobbled without sufficient legal power to support our expansion into global markets successfully,” said Laura Dawson, CEO of Food Physics & Body Dynamics, LLC in Castle Hayne, N.C.
“A prolonged SCOTUS vacancy affects business at every level because it leaves open the door to uncertainty,” said Travis Everette, Broker in Charge of United Real Estate Raleigh in Raleigh, N.C. “One of the primary functions of the Supreme Court is to serve as final arbiter of some of our nation's most debated topics. With the real possibility of a 4-4 split on decisions, that function is drastically compromised.”
“The undue delays on important issues such as the Affordable Care Act, Planned Parenthood, and Citizens United put the flow of capital in the country at risk, which in turn keeps my clientele from making their improvement investments in their homes and businesses,” said Kevin Haner, Owner of Haner Construction in Las Vegas. “The country needs stability as we correct ourselves from the recent Great Recession, and the Supreme Court vacancy undermines that stability."
“More than the uncertainty associated with any particular set of decisions, although I am worried about that, I'm more concerned by the uncertainty caused by the degradation of the rule of law when lawmakers refuse to do their jobs,” said Binta Brown, CEO of Fermata Entertainment Ltd. and founder of Big Mouth Records in Brooklyn, N.Y. “We rely on presidents to fulfill their constitutional duty, and Congress to do the same; a well-functioning government is essential to the certainty and security of entrepreneurs and business owners. The refusal to even hold a vote simply results in greater insecurity and less confidence.”
“It is clearly an important and vital role to fill; further gridlock in Washington, no matter the branch of government, only serves to undermine progress,” said Thomas Grech, Executive Director of the Queens Chamber of Commerce in East Elmhurst, N.Y. “The business world waits for no one; this potential impediment would surely have a negative outcome for business.”
“The stalling of the hearings for the replacement Justice of the Supreme Court is naked partisanship at its worst, and creates a precedent for either party to do this again in the future. U.S. businesses need to have a level playing field and minimized risk in order to be successful in domestic and world markets,” said John Gordon, President of USA Corporate Services, Inc. in New York. “The Senate should do its job, hold its hearings, and give the new nominee the up-or-down vote mandated in the Constitution.”
“I believe we should fill the Supreme Court vacancy as quickly as possible, as it is important for the legal due process of our country to continue to move in an unimpeded manner absent politics,” said Nadine Cino, CEO of TygaBox Systems Inc. in New York.
“Our business community is affected by the way our federal government functions at many levels. Checks and balances are fundamental. With the Supreme Court functioning at less than full capacity, we are not operating equitably,” said Ruth Mendes, President of Wordcraft & Graphics, Unlimited in Pound Ridge, N.Y. “Please proceed with the process of filling this vacancy in a responsible and speedy way.”
“The American people elected President Obama (twice!), and he has not only the right, but an obligation, to fill Supreme Court vacancies, just as the Senate has an obligation to confirm one of his choices,” said Pamela Cooper, Owner of In Bloom Floral and Gifts, LLC in Schenectady, N.Y. “Our economy cannot afford these ridiculous distractions.”
“I believe that those in the Senate are reprehensible in their continued efforts to thwart the President from being able to do his job. Let history show their reckless abandon to ever having done the right thing,” said Susan Guditus, Co-Owner of Powerhouse Industries in Eastport, N.Y.
“The immediate impact of the vacancy on my business would be limited,” said Steve Jones, President of Green Energy Enterprises in Cincinnati. “The impact on my business and our customers will be the uncertainty brought on by Congress’s inability to complete another task.”
“It is unconstitutional and morally deficient to leave a vacancy in the highest court in the land,” said Rhonda Hills, General Partner at Precizion Painting Plus in Cleveland. “And that's bad for business.”
“My business will be hardly affected, but my faith in the U.S. Supreme Court's impartiality in interpreting the Constitution and the laws will be,” said Chandrasekaran Pillai, CFO of Quantum Polymer in Cleveland.
“Whenever any entity is short staffed, the remaining members must share an increased workload. In today's world that could lead to inadequate preparation and poor decisions” said J. Carson, Owner of Insurance Diversified Agency, Inc. in Solon, Ohio. “I believe the Senate should hold the required hearings and then make a decision on the nominee. This would be best for my business and our nation.”
“We can't restore consumer confidence and sustain a growing economy unless our Congress ends its senseless partisan gridlock and fully takes up its role as our nation's leaders,” said Steve Masters, President of JustLaws in Philadelphia. “That includes the Senate following its Constitutional mandate to consider President Obama's nominee to the Supreme Court.”
“We have a duly elected president who has the right to submit a nominee to the Supreme Court,” said Lou Camerlengo, President and Co-founder of Five Star Development, Inc. in Pittsburgh. “Waiting a year or more for such a critical decision would be ludicrous in the business world.”
“Uncertainty is the economy's worst enemy. Garland is a fair and good judge. He deserves to be confirmed,” said Graham Douglas, J.D., CEO of Creative Solutions Consultants in Chesterfield, S.C. “We the American people deserve a Senate that will follow the Constitution and do its job. The political instability caused by the Republican Party for many years has hurt everyone.”
“Our constitution is not a plaything and the Senate need to stop treating it as such. The American people spoke four years ago when the President was elected for a second four-year term,” said Anita Nelam, Chief Strategy Officer at Innovative Global Supply, LLC in Columbia, S.C. “The GOP needs to get serious and take care of their business, just as they expect us to do on ours. The Court has important work to resolve this year and this vacancy needs to be filled sooner rather than later.”
“A vacancy on the Supreme Court would leave businesses in mental limbo, i.e., knowing that the country's high court isn't whole,” said Dena De Santiago-Young, Owner of First Investment, Inc. in Corpus Christi, Texas. “The effects of an incomplete Supreme Court would be emotional and infinite.”
“The President’s job is to nominate a Supreme Court Justice when there is a vacancy, so the Supreme Court Justices can do their jobs and rule on issues that affect my business transactions,” said Marylyn Harris, President of Harrland Health care in Pearland, Texas. “This issue is key to our national security.”
“It is so unfortunate that the rights of the people are not in the forefront of some of the political leaders in the Senate. We the people have the right to have our elected president nominate a Supreme Court judge. And we the people have the right to have the elected leadership of Senate give the nominee a fair opportunity to prove his qualification to uphold the great responsibility to serve the people of the United States as a Supreme Court Judge,” said Susan Jamie, Owner of Ferra Coffee International in San Antonio. “As a small minority business owner I am disappointed in the leadership of the Republican Senate for making this important issue a matter of their own professional gain and not take in consideration the good and will of the people.”
“The legislative and executive branches of government are playing with fire as it relates to small business development as they play partisan politics,” said Johnny Riley, Jr., CEO of J Riley Consulting Group, LLC in Texarkana, Texas. “Many small businesses like ours are impacted, because of their failure to take action on this important action and it causes us to rethink how we invest in the future expansion.”
“In business, disagreements have to be solved and votes are cast, just like in government and our judicial process. However, there is always a way to break a tie. In business, it is an executive; in the Senate, the vice president,” said Kyle Brooks, CEO of Brooks Food Safety in Alexandria Va. “As it sits now, the Supreme Court does not have a chance to break a tie. That leads to either a stalemate or a justice being coerced into changing their interpretation of the law. Gridlock and coercion are not American values, and do not belong on the Supreme Court, which is why a hearing and a vote must be held on the president's nominee.”
“A vacancy on the Supreme Court could promote a slowdown of the political or regulatory process, thus affecting the effective and efficient operation of businesses,” said Elva Smith, President of Applied Global Research Corporation in Norfolk, Va. “A vacancy on the Supreme Court could--among other things--hold up decisions on an issue or issues that are vital to the operation of my business and it could slow down the entire economy the longer the vacancy continues. It is an issue that requires prompt and serious consideration by a responsible leadership.”
“The vacancy of the Supreme Court may not affect my business directly, but I believe will affect Justice as we know it in the United States,” said Dr. Samia Harris, Executive Director of Prince William Educational Institute in Woodbridge, Va., “How can we claim to be the guide for justice in the world if we cannot have a functioning Supreme Court? President Obama fulfilled his duty and it is time for the Congress to fulfill theirs.”
“Businesses cannot wait for nine months to make a decision, and that should be the same for the Senate,” said Chris D’Couto, President and CEO of Neah Power Systems, Inc. in Bothell, Wash. “We cannot afford tied outcomes from the Supreme Court which have direct impact on the ability of businesses to plan and operate.”
“Politics aside, unless a new justice is confirmed soon, the court will be left without nine justices for the rest of this term and all of next term, given how long it will take the next president to choose, vet, and nominate a new justice and the senate to confirm the nominee,” said Jonathan Bensky, President and CEO of Pacific Northwest Advisors, LLC in Seattle. “With ‘'ties’ not definitive, the uncertainty that two Supreme Court terms with ties could generate is clearly bad for business.”