© 2017

The New Roberts Court, Donald Trump, and Our Failing Constitution

  • One of the first scholarly books to examine the political implications of the appointment of a new Supreme Court Justice after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia

  • Presents an in-depth perspective on political judicial developments from a leading Constitutional law scholar

  • Places Citizens United and related recent Supreme Court decisions in extensive historical context of developments in American political economy and Constitutional interpretation

  • Offers forward-looking proposals for reforming the political system to restore a more “republican,” public-interest-oriented democracy


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. The Foundation for a Balanced Structure

  3. The Transformation of the Constitutional System

  4. The Early and New Roberts Courts

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 197-197
    2. Stephen M. Feldman
      Pages 227-257
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 259-274

About this book


This book traces the evolution of the constitutional order, explaining Donald Trump’s election as a symptom of a degraded democratic-capitalist system. Beginning with the framers’ vision of a balanced system—balanced between the public and private spheres, between government power and individual rights—the constitutional order evolved over two centuries until it reached its present stage, Democracy, Inc., in which  corporations and billionaires wield herculean political power. The five conservative justices of the early Roberts Court, including the late Antonin Scalia, stamped Democracy, Inc., with a constitutional imprimatur, contravening the framers’ vision while simultaneously claiming to follow the Constitution’s original meaning. The justices believed they were upholding the American way of life, but they instead placed our democratic-capitalist system in its gravest danger since World War II. With Neil Gorsuch replacing Scalia, the new Court must choose: Will it follow the early Roberts Court in approving and bolstering Democracy, Inc., or will it restore the crucial balance between the public and private spheres in our constitutional system?


Politics Supreme Court Democracy Economic Policy Judicial System Legislation Court Policy Scalia Finance Progressivism Constitution Laissez Faire Citizens United

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.College of LawUniversity of WyomingLaramieUSA

About the authors

Stephen M. Feldman is Visiting Scholar at Harvard Law School, USA, and has been the Jerry W. Housel/Carl F. Arnold Distinguished Professor of Law and Adjunct Professor of Political Science at the University of Wyoming, USA, since 2002. He has authored four scholarly books on Constitutional law and American legal thought, edited an anthology on law and religion, and written more than sixty articles and essay contributions on law, politics, and jurisprudence. 

Bibliographic information