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Chevron Deference Is Dead, Administrative State Takes Hit

This decision will have a profound impact, realigning the mechanisms of power and governance and preventing executive overreach.

In a decision that is sending shockwaves through the corridors of power in D.C., the Supreme Court has decisively overturned the “Chevron Deference,” striking a formidable blow against the burgeoning administrative state. This 6-3 ruling, clearly divided along ideological lines, ends a 40-year precedent that has long allowed federal agencies unchecked freedom to interpret laws with often only a tenuous connection to the legislative intent of Congress. This ruling effectively dismantles a cornerstone of bureaucratic overreach that conservatives and constitutional purists have criticized for decades.

For far too long, the Chevron doctrine has permitted unelected bureaucrats to wield legislative-like power, dictating policies on everything from environmental regulations to drug approvals without clear congressional mandate. The doctrine has been a significant propellant of government expansion, enabling regulatory agencies to fill in legislative blanks at whim. The Supreme Court‘s decision reasserts the foundational principle that laws should be made by elected representatives, not interpreted expansively by administrators to fit transient policy goals.

Chief Justice Roberts, in penning the opinion, highlighted that the Chevron Deference “defies the command of” the Administrative Procedure Act, which is intended to keep federal agencies in check. The conservatives on the bench have essentially reined in what many see as a runaway train of regulatory fiat, asserting that judges should no longer defer to agencies but must apply their own interpretations of the law. This pivotal move promises to make it significantly easier to challenge and potentially overturn regulations that affect wide swathes of American life, from the handling of hazardous substances and climate change policies to the regulation of emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and cryptocurrencies.

The Era of Unchecked Regulatory Authority Is Over

The implications of this decision cannot be overstated. It marks a critical redirection in the balance of power, favoring judicial and legislative oversight over bureaucratic discretion. The Biden administration, which defended the Chevron Deference, finds itself on the back foot, with its regulatory agenda now facing stiffer headwinds. The liberal justices expressed deep dissatisfaction, foreseeing complications in how effectively the federal government can manage complex, evolving challenges without this deference.

This ruling is not merely a procedural adjustment; it is a resounding endorsement of the conservative view that the size and scope of the federal government need curbing. It is a victory for those who argue that the expansion of the administrative state represents a dilution of democracy and a deviation from the constitutional order. As the dust settles, it is clear that this decision will have profound and lasting impacts, realigning the mechanisms of power and governance in the United States, and reinforcing the judiciary’s role as a bulwark against executive overreach. The message from the Supreme Court is clear: the era of unchecked regulatory authority is over, and the reins of control will be more tightly held, closer to the constitutional ideals of governance by the elected and accountable.

Robert Chernin

Robert Chernin

Robert B. Chernin has brought his years of political consulting and commentary back to radio. As a longtime entrepreneur, business leader, fundraiser and political confidant, Robert has a unique perspective with insights not heard anyway else. Robert has consulted on federal and statewide campaigns at the gubernatorial, congressional, senatorial, and presidential level. He served in leadership roles in the presidential campaigns of President George W. Bush as well as McCain for President. He led Florida’s Victory 2004’s national Jewish outreach operations as Executive Director. In addition, he served on the President’s Committee of the Republican Jewish Coalition. Robert co-founded and served as president of the Electoral Science Institute, a non-profit organization that utilizes behavioral science to increase voter participation and awareness. Robert can be heard on multiple radio stations and viewed on the “Of the People” podcast where you get your podcasts.