Ninth Circuit agrees with AG Chris Carr

Passed in 1996, the Congressional Review Act (CRA) was successfully used once, in 2001, to nullify Federal Regulations promulgated by federal agencies. In 2017 President Trump and the Republican Congress used the CRA to repeal 14 of 15 Obama era regulations.

In 2018 The Center for Biological Diversity’s lawsuit challenged the use of the Congressional Review Act to ditch certain hunting limits in national wildlife refuges in Alaska. Various green groups joined the lawsuit which ended up in United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

In March 2019, Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr led a coalition of 13 state attorneys general in filing a friend-of-the-court brief in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, defending the constitutionality of the Congressional Review Act.

Last week, the Ninth Circuit issued an opinion upholding the constitutionality of the CRA. The court echoed the arguments of the 13-state coalition in holding that the CRA and the joint congressional resolutions are consistent with separation-of-powers principles and otherwise do not violate the Constitution.   

Attorney General Carr had these thoughts on the decision,

“Too often, federal regulations cause unjustifiable harm to the states, and Congress plays a critical role in acting as a check on administrative agencies. We, along with our partner states, have consistently argued that the Congressional Review Act is a lawful and effective tool for reining in administrative overreach, and we are glad the Ninth Circuit upheld this position.”

The full press release is available here

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