A federal appeals court ruled to uphold the Congressional Review Act based on its protections of separation of powers in a fight backed by Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr.
A panel of judges for the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals tossed out The Center for Biological Diversity lawsuit against the Fish and Wildlife Service last week. The Center for Biological Diversity sued the agency because it used the Congressional Review Act to stop Alaska from imposing certain hunting regulations.
“Too often, federal regulations cause unjustifiable harm to the states, and Congress plays a critical role in acting as a check on administrative agencies,” Carr said.
The Congressional Review Act gives Congress the ability to review federal regulations. The agencies must submit a report for approval to Congress before enacting new rules.
“Congress’s efforts to exercise oversight of federal administrative agencies by means of the CRA are consistent with the ‘structure of this government, and the distribution of this mass of power among its constituent parts,’” Judge Sandra Ikuta wrote.
Carr and state attorneys general from Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and Utah filed an amicus brief in March. They argued that the CRA is constitutionally sound based on the principles of the separation of power.
Separation of power ensures checks and balances for each branch of the government. It protects democracy, according to the U.S. Constitution.
“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,” Carr said in a statement.