Do you care if Chevron is upheld?

Just an anecdote I find mildly amusing. One of our best friends claims to be a libertarian. I’ve long believed (and told him) that his position was inconsistent and selfish, but he likes that self image so so be it. He has long argued against bureaucratic rule-making, arguing that such efforts ought to be done by Congress. My wife and I have given up on expression the impracticality of that solution.

With the recent decision apparently holding that the decisions ought to be made by federal judges instead of the bureaucracy, he’s not at all sure that strongly limiting bureaucracy is such a great idea! Be careful what you wish for! :smiley:

In general, I suspect that the principal outcome of this ruling will be that the court system becomes overworked with regulations cases and our taxes go up to afford more courts and lawyers to litigate all of this.

Both business and the government are well funded, and regulations cover probably almost every industry. Plus with partisan appointment of judges, the decision on any particular regulation could turn a full 180 at every level of appeals. Since there’s no telling whether the Supreme Court will take up your case or not, and everyone is well funded, everything is liable to bump up to the highest or second highest level.

I’d surmise that some part of the motivation for Chevron was self-preservation. Chevron also ties in well with the general position of the Supreme Court, on Federal Government powers, that a presumption of good faith is assumed and, if the Executive branch needs to be reined in in some way, then Congress should explicitly say so.

In general, I’d say that this decision goes pretty opposite of the general logic used in the immunity case. It’s hard to see it as being based on logic and consistency, rather than politics.

I’ll bet you a shiny new dime that no one in Congress proposes substantial tax increases to expand the judiciary to replace efforts previously done by the bureaucracy. Instead, the bureaucracy will more likely be reduced - since they no longer need to perform the function they long have done quite well. :roll_eyes: And we’ll just pretend everything is hunky dory, as the regulation and enforcement just doesn’t get done.

In my area - Social Security - decisions on disability are made by Administrative Law Judges (a position created by federal legislation). Many folk complain about the quality of ALJ decisions and the time involved in adjudicating claims, but - at least over the past decade or so - I’m not aware of any serious proposals to increase the number of ALJs or the resources available to them. Instead, the number of ALJs seems to be decreasing. (The number of initial claims has varied somewhat, but - admittedly - is currently down.)

Federal courts can be very critical of ALJs’ efforts, but I’ve also consistently heard that many/most federal courts really dislike the portion of their caseload which is SS disability reviews. And courts have been very happy to require that additional efforts be made at the administrative level, with zero concern of whether sufficient resources exist. For 30+ years, there have been proposals to establish a specialized federal bench to handle nothing but SS cases, but that is never going to happen.

All this is simply to say, if my little area of professional experience is at all indicative, no, there is no chance of an expanded judiciary resulting from this and subsequent decisions.

Congress likes to play chicken and see how long they can kick the can down the road but it’s not like there’s no real world ramifications of those choices.

They can certainly try to not raise taxes. But the only thing you get from that is that either you pull an emergency correction, or an emergency correction happens on its own.

Most legislation already has a clause allowing the agency to set regulations. A lot of people don’t like this framework because they think that Congress is devolving too much of it’s power onto unelected government workers, so I don’t think tweaking the language a bit will do much to change minds.

True, but industry actors are also now less likely to be challenged because it is generally more expensive to bring a civil suit than an administrative charge before an agency. Which is kind of the point. Groups like the Sierra Club are really going to have to pick their battles much more selectively now. Private citizens even moreso.

That’s exactly what Congress did in the Dodd-Frank reforms within the Securities and Exchange Act, but the Court struck it down last week as unconstitutional in SEC v. Jarkesy. In sum, Congress delegated authority to the SEC to impose civil penalties through administrative hearings against parties engaged in securities fraud. The Court held that the 7th Amendment requires any such proceeding to occur in court before a jury despite the fact that for centuries, the Court’s precedent has held that the jury requirement only applies in “suits” (per the plain language of the amendment) and not to administrative proceedings.

There are two separate but related issues (and recent cases) relevant to your question. First is SEC v. Jarkesy, noted above. Second is Loper v. Raimondo, in which the Court overturned its prior ruling in Chevron that administrative agencies are entitled deference when interpreting laws they enforce. The Chevron rule was essentially that where a statute has some ambiguity and multiple reasonable interpretations are possible, courts shall defer to the reasonable interpretation of the agency charged with enforcing said statute. Per Loper, now judges decide which reasonable interpretation controls, even in regulatory areas that require technical expertise in scientific and other fields. Speaking as a lawyer, it’s frankly quite hubristic for judges to think they are better than the experts at understanding and applying environmental sciences, engineering, medicine, and the many other technical areas subject to federal regulation.

Related to your question (@Buck_Godot ), in theory Congress could codify Chevron deference. However, I’m concerned that we’ve reached a post-fact and post-legal era at the Supreme Court in which the majority is willing to ignore (or contrive) facts and law to reach politically-desirable outcomes. As a result we have a court that, among other things, has:

  • Invented absolute immunity for presidents despite no constitutional or historical support and clearly absurd outcomes
  • Reinterpreted the 7th Amendment (SEC v. Jaresky)
  • Misrepresented the factual record to pretend a public school football coach wasn’t leading his players in organized prayer (he was) (Kennedy v. Bremerton)
  • Reinterpreted 200 years of precedent concerning the Second Amendment and ignored its plain language (Heller)

So it would not surprise me if the Court held that a law passed by Congress to delegate interpretive authority to executive branch agencies somehow violated the separations of powers.

Totally agree. The only way to reconcile the Court’s curtailing executive branch authority to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed” while concurrently conferring absolute immunity on the president for official acts is to view the decisions as political rather than legal.

Article III confers authority to Congress to regulate the appellate authority of the Supreme Court. It may become necessary to do so.

In all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall have original Jurisdiction. In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make.

I also see this as basically granting the Texas judge Kacsmaryk’s reasoning in the Mifeprex case minus the issue of standing. It seemst they have no problem with the judge saying that it was correct for him to “reevaluate” the science on his own and determine it to be unsafe. So all the anti-abortion crowd has to do is to find a proper plaintiff to bring before an allied judge and they get rid of the abortion pill.