It is common, even mundane, to observe that the Supreme Court's approach to statutory interpretation has become increasingly "textualist" in character - that is, more oriented to statutory language and the assertedly "objective" meaning of statutory text than to the collective subjective intent behind the legislation.
The following excerpt is reprinted with permission of Stanford Law Review, 559 Nathan Abbott Way, Palo Alto, CA 94035, "The confounding Common Law Originalism in Recent Supreme Court Satutory Interpretation: Implications for the Legislative History Debate and Beyond, "(excerpt including tables), Jane Schactoer, Vol. 50, No. 1, 1998. Reproduced by permission of the publisher via Copyright Clearance Center, Inc. A complete and annotated version may be obtained from the author or Law Quadrangle Notes.
Jane S. Schacter,
Where Does the Supreme Court Look for Guidance?,
Law Quadrangle (formerly Law Quad Notes)
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/lqnotes/vol42/iss1/8