In a ruling that’s MASSIVE good news for freedom, and by extension to gun owners across America, the US Supreme Court threw the “Chevron Deference” into the dustbin of history today.  This 40-year-old precedent gave government agencies carte blanche to increase their power dramatically, even to the point of throwing people in prison for daring to violate their edicts.  It ends now, thanks to a 6-3 decision in the case of Loper Bright v. Raimondo.  You can read the Court’s ruling here.

While the case on its face dealt with National Marine Fisheries Service over-reach, the ATF certainly had its wings lopped off today to put it nicely.  Remember their edicts on bump stocks, pistol braces, and rules that made possession of fender washers as constructive possession of a suppressor?  Those days are over.  No doubt Biden’s bozo appointee Deedlebecker or whatever the heck his name is probably still digesting this as his aids are talking really slowly trying to use single-syllable words for him to better understand what just happened.

ZeroHedge has it:

The Supreme Court has ruled to overturn the so-called ‘Chevron Deference’ dealing a huge blow to the so-called ‘administrative state’ that have enjoyed

In an 6-3 decision along ideological lines, the Supreme Court’s conservative majority upended the 40-year administrative law precedent that gave agencies across the federal government leeway to interpret ambiguous laws through rulemaking.

Conservatives and Republican policymakers have long been critical of the doctrine, saying it has contributed to the dramatic growth of government and gives unelected regulators far too much power to make policy by going beyond what Congress intended when it approved various laws. The authority of regulatory agencies has been increasingly questioned by the Supreme Court in recent years.

Those on the other side say the Chevron doctrine empowers an activist federal government to serve the public interest in an increasingly complicated world without having to seek specific congressional authorization for everything that needs to be done.

As The Hill report, judges previously had to defer to agencies in cases where the law is ambiguous.

Now, judges will substitute their own best interpretation of the law, instead of deferring to the agencies – effectively making it easier to overturn regulations that govern wide-ranging aspects of American life.

This includes rules governing toxic chemicals, drugs and medicine, climate change, artificial intelligence, cryptocurrency and more.

The move hands a major victory to conservative and anti-regulatory interests that have looked to eliminate the precedent as part of a broader attack on the growing size of the “administrative state.”

The Biden administration defended the precedent before the high court.

Of course they did.

The liberals on the court are not happy:

“In dissent, Justice Kagan says the conservative supermajority “disdains restraint, and grasps for power,” making “a laughingstock” of stare decisis and producing “large-scale disruption” throughout the entire government. She is both furious and terrified.”

That sounds pretty close to ad hominem attacks, Elena.

Over at Shooting News Weekly, they’re describing it as this:

Loper Bright, along with yesterday’s ruling in SEC v. Jarkesy, has dealt a body blow to the ATF’s firearms regulatory regime. No longer will gun laws be whatever regulators want them to be, just because unelected bureaucrats say so. Regulators will still be able to make rules…but they’ll now have to defend them in court and convince judges that their rules are consistent with black letter law.

The regulatory deck is no longer stacked in the bureaucrats’ favor.

LKB, a Constitutional Law attorney who contributes to SNW wrote this in comments earlier today:

I’ll be doing a longer post, but the impact of the Jarkesy + Loper Bright decisions cannot be understated.

This is the biggest constitutional earthquake in decades, and is going to turn DC inside out. This is HUGE!

For decades, the DC bureaucracy has been allowed to run amock. They could “interpret” federal law to suit their own views, and under Chevron and Auer, the courts were generally required to defer to the bureaucrats’ interpretations of the law and regulations the bureaucrats created. Plus agencies could function as their own police, prosecutor, judge, jury, and executioner if you violated their rules / regulations. And as the bureaucrats aggregated more and more power, they got drunk on it, expanding their remit constantly . . . leaving us with the Deep State mess we have.

No more. Auer deference was quietly killed a few years ago, and Chevon has been dead law walking for a while. Now Chevron’s officially dead, with a very nice sweetener of Jarkesy thrown in. The bureaucrats in DC will be going absolutely nuts as reality sinks in.

Phillip Hamburger, a law professor, was one of the first to shout very clearly and persuasively that this emperor has no clothes — the modern administrative state has no constitutional basis, and in fact violates numerous constitutional provisions. But he did more than just write . . . he put together the organizations that brought the test cases that have now smashed the modern administrative state.

I communicated with Phil yesterday, and he acknowledges the feds will fight tooth and nail to keep their power, so the fight isn’t over. But as we’ve seen in the post-Bruen world, the right has learned the left’s old tactic of how to forum shop test cases into friendly venues and circuits. Look for lots of them to now be filed in the usual places.

There you have it.  Expect more litigation as the administrative state venue shops cases, but they’re gonna have to work to keep their extra-legal powers in play.

9 thoughts on “‘THIS IS HUGE’: Chevron Deference gutted, Administrative State apoplectic”
  1. I don’t think we should celebrate one body of administrative power mongers seizing power from another group of administrative power mongers. This isn’t even a lesser of two evil situations they’ve just seized power back from the administrators who admittedly are more expert in those areas of law and given it to judges. Yay!

  2. I was going to pen a thoughtful paragraph, but boiling it all down it’s just this: The administrative state allowed for a circular firing squad where no one, in any level of government, was likely to be held accountable to anyone for anything. Good riddance.

  3. “Administrative” power monger to administrative power monger? Three branches of government in our Republic for checks and balances. The Judicial branch was formed to interpret law, Chevron unconstitutionally seized that power and transferred said power to the executive (admin agency) branch. That decision by a very f’d up USSC in 1984 was unconstitutional. The People of These United States are seeing a return, admittedly ‘on the edges’, of our Republic. I think The People should be throwing parties to honor this decision!!!!!!! For me this Independence Day will have extra meaning, celebration of the slow but certain return of our freedom and a restoration of our Republic as designed by our brilliant, yes f’ng brilliant, Founding Fathers!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I wish I could run into Barrie Ozero so I could stuff his pen and phone up his Communist/Marxist/ Progressive ass!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Oh, lest I forget, Congress you will now have to do your job. When you rob us of our freedom you can no longer blame the ass-clown “experts” in the admin agencies. A hearty FU to ALL who are not believers and supporters of our Republic as founded. Get out of our country!

  4. Ken are you saying BATFE are THE experts in their field? As with every other executive agency it is run by political hacks for the express purpose of imposing unconstitutional executive regulations on The People. If our corrupt federal government did what it was formed to do, and only exercised the powers it is limited to by our Constitution all of these “experts” would not be needed. Experts; Dept’s of: education, health and human services, homeland security, and so on and so on…..? Give me a f’n break!
    Return to these departments exclusively; state, treasury, war to encompass the other original navy dept., attorney general. If that were to happen we might have our Republic returned to The People. The experts can fornicate with themselves.
    As the Communists, er Democrats but I repeat myself say, we are a nation of laws. This does not mean ‘regulations’. You want a law pass it through congress signed by the president otherwise piss off mate.

    1. Looking down the road, I wonder if an economist-type, like Dr. Lott, will have the wherewithal to examine how much in fees and fines is likely to be saved by taxpayers by this course correction. Maybe IRS staff will be joining ATF in implementing a new attitude tomorrow as well.

    2. I’m using administrative in the absolutely generic sense here not that administrative tasks are only done by administrators and administrators can only be employed in the administration or executive branch! I’m saying our entire system is fouled up Beyond salvation. There is no good left in the United States government.

      I always thought growing up as a child of the Cold War era that the United States was the cowboy on the White Horse come riding in to save the day and that hasn’t been true for almost a hundred years.

      You are right that the administrators are political hacks and yet that’s all we have from the head guy on down our president is a drooling idiot who can’t remember anything from day to day and our country is being led by a woman who says she’s a doctor but her doctorate is in education and she is pulling the strings or Valerie Jarrett is pulling the strings or some other Obama flack… it is over.

      I’m saying that when the United States Supreme Court takes a power away from an administrative agency or all administrative agencies and gives it back to judges we are no better off because they are all corrupt absolutely and in their entirety. As John correia from ASP says just make sure you’re right with God because it’s almost over.

    3. Jeff I agree with you 100% but it would take an army of men like you and me to do anything and unfortunately most of America especially we conservatives don’t have the testicular fortitude to do what really needs to be done. If we did we never would have stood for Roe v Wade or bush V Gore or any of the bastard decisions of the Supreme Court .

      The tree of Liberty needs to be refreshed.

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