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H.R. 1927: Separation of Powers Restoration Act of 2019

The text of the bill below is as of Mar 27, 2019 (Introduced).

Summary of this bill

Have federal agencies been given too much power and leniency by federal courts to write policy?


In a 1984 case dealing with air quality standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Supreme Court ruled that any federal agency rule or regulation should be upheld as constitutional if it was deemed “reasonable” and if Congress hadn’t legislated on the precise issue at question.

The practice which emerged in the subsequent decades has been nicknamed “the _Chevron _deference,” in which courts usually defer to an inherent presumption of constitutionality regarding federal regulations. This made it far harder, though not impossible, for courts to strike down rules or regulations set ...



1st Session

H. R. 1927


March 27, 2019

(for himself, Mr. Collins of Georgia, Mr. David P. Roe of Tennessee, Mr. Lamborn, Mr. Burgess, Mr. Palmer, Mr. Meadows, Mr. Gallagher, Mr. Duncan, Mr. Green of Tennessee, Mr. Yoho, Mr. Byrne, Mr. Griffith, Mr. Rouzer, Mr. Loudermilk, Mr. Walker, Mr. Gaetz, Mr. Hudson, Mr. Johnson of Louisiana, Mr. Chabot, and Mr. Wittman) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary


To amend title 5, United States Code, to clarify the nature of judicial review of agency interpretations of statutory and regulatory provisions.


Short title

This Act may be cited as the Separation of Powers Restoration Act of 2019.


Judicial review of statutory and regulatory interpretations

Section 706 of title 5, United States Code, is amended—


by striking To the extent necessary and inserting (a) To the extent necessary;


by striking decide all relevant questions of law, interpret constitutional and statutory provisions, and;


by inserting after of the terms of an agency action the following and decide de novo all relevant questions of law, including the interpretation of constitutional and statutory provisions, and rules made by agencies. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, this subsection shall apply in any action for judicial review of agency action authorized under any provision of law. No law may exempt any such civil action from the application of this section except by specific reference to this section; and


by striking The reviewing court shall— and inserting the following:


The reviewing court shall—