It was recently reported by ConservativeBrief that the Supreme Court has reinstated a rule from the administration of former President Donald Trump that limited the power of states and Native American tribes to block pipelines and other energy projects.
The decision was made on Wednesday when the Supreme Court Justices decided, in a 5 – 4 verdict, to halt a ruling from a lower court got rid of the rule, and sent it back to the Environmental Protection Agency, The Associated Press reported.
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The Biden administration has said it intends to rewrite the rule. Work on a revision has begun, but the administration has said a final rule is not expected until the spring of 2023. The Trump-era rule will remain in effect in the meantime.
The Biden administration had told the justices in a court filing that it agreed that the U.S. District Court Judge William Alsup lacked the authority to throw out the rule without first determining that it was invalid. But the administration had urged the court not to reinstate the rule, saying that in the months since the Alsup’s ruling, officials have adapted to the change, reverting to regulations in place for decades. Another change would “cause substantial disruption and disserve the public interest,” the administration said.
Alsup was nominated to the bench by President Bill Clinton.
The section of federal law at issue in the case is Section 401 of the Clean Water Act. For decades, it had been the rule that a federal agency could not issue a license or permit to conduct any activity that could result in any discharge into navigable waters unless the affected state or tribe certified that the discharge was complied with the Clean Water Act and state law, or waived certification.
Chief Justice John Roberts joined liberal Justices in dissenting.
“That renders the Court’s emergency docket not for emergencies at all,” Justice Elena Kagan said in the dissent for the Justices.
“This Court may stay a decision under review in a court of appeals only in extraordinary circumstances and upon the weightiest considerations,” she said. The Justice said the challengers’ request for a stay rested on “simple assertions – on conjectures, unsupported by an present-day evidence.”
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“We’ve seen Chief Justice Roberts join the Democratic appointees in dissenting from some of the Court’s prior shadow docket rulings,” CNN Supreme Court analyst Steve Vladeck said. “But today’s ruling is the first time he’s joined in publicly criticizing the majority for how it is using and abusing the shadow docket. That’s a pretty significant development, and a strong signal for the Court’s de facto leader to be sending.”
As Justice Stephen Breyer retires it appears a new Justice is going to take his place as her confirmation is all but certain.
Three top Republican senators have announced that they will vote to confirm Ketanji Brown Jackson to the U.S. Supreme Court.
GOP Sens. Mitt Romney of Utah, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Susan Collins of Maine — all notable “Never-Trumpers” — have announced they will support Jackson’s confirmation to the court.
“After reviewing Judge Jackson’s record and testimony, I have concluded that she is a well-qualified jurist and a person of honor,” Romney said in a statement. “While I do not expect to agree with every decision she may make on the Court, I believe that she more than meets the standard of excellence and integrity. I congratulate Judge Jackson on her expected confirmation and look forward to her continued service to our nation.”