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Project 2025 partners join right-wing media and climate deniers to celebrate SCOTUS decision overturning Chevron deference

On June 28, the Supreme Court upended 40 years of precedent by overturning Chevron deference, a decision that will restrict federal agencies' regulatory abilities that will also make it easier for corporations to challenge environmental protections, climate action, and rules that protect workers and regulate drugs and financial practices, among other issues.

Undoing Chevron deference has been a central goal of the conservative legal movement and corporate lobbyists for decades, with right-wing think tank the Heritage Foundation arguing that “the modern administrative state creates a pervasive system of consolidated power that weakens the checks and balances carefully constructed by the United States Constitution.” Now, Heritage has joined with over 100 other conservative organizations to organize Project 2025, a comprehensive transition plan to guide the next GOP presidential administration with policy proposals and staffing recommendations. In response to the Supreme Court ruling finally overturning Chevron deference, multiple Project 2025 partners joined right-wing media figures and climate deniers in celebrating the decision.

  • What is Chevron deference and why overturning it matters

    • Chevron deference was a legal principle that required courts to defer to federal agencies’ reasonable interpretations of ambiguous statutes they administer. Chevron deference, established in the 1984 decision Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., required courts to defer to federal agencies' “reasonable interpretation” of ambiguous statutes they administer when Congress had not directly addressed the issue. It applied to agency interpretations with the force of law, such as those from formal adjudications or notice-and-comment rulemaking. [Cornell Legal Information Institute, accessed 6/28/24]
    • The overturning of Chevron deference will significantly shift power away from federal agencies to the courts, potentially impacting a wide range of public protections and regulations. This shift could undermine decades of established policies and practices across many areas of governance. Without Chevron deference, courts may now substitute their own interpretations for complex technical and scientific issues ranging from financial regulations to environmental protections. This could reduce agencies’ ability to respond effectively to evolving challenges, such as the climate crisis, and weaken the government’s ability to implement laws as Congress intended. [Natural Resources Defense Council, accessed 6/28/24]
    • In her dissenting opinion, Justice Elena Kagan argued that the majority decision upends the balance and separation of power and will impact decision-making around all major issues. “It gives courts the power to make all manner of scientific and technical judgments," Kagan wrote. “It gives courts the power to make all manner of policy calls, including about how to weigh competing goods and values. (See Chevron itself.) It puts courts at the apex of the administrative process as to every conceivable subject—because there are always gaps and ambiguities in regulatory statutes, and often of great import. What actions can be taken to address climate change or other environmental challenges? What will the Nation’s health-care system look like in the coming decades? Or the financial or transportation systems? What rules are going to constrain the development of A.I.? In every sphere of current or future federal regulation, expect courts from now on to play a commanding role. It is not a role Congress has given to them, in the APA or any other statute. It is a role this Court has now claimed for itself, as well as for other judges.” [Supreme Court, Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo, 6/28/24]
    • Legal expert Neal Katyal argued on MSNBC that overturning Chevron deference is “going to impact you and me every single day of our lives.” “This is a massive game change to the way our government is going to operate,” Katyal said. “Justice Kagan's dissent at the very last lines say how dangerous this is, how this shows that this court has no respect for the role of precedent, for stare decisis. She points out that the Supreme Court has relied on this principle of deference, Chevron deference, over 70 times since 1984. Lower courts have relied on it more than 18,000 times. And yet the court blew past all that and totally changed the law in a way that's going to impact you and me every single day of our lives.” [MSNBC, Ana Cabrera Reports, 6/28/24]
  • Project 2025 partners celebrate court’s decision to overturn Chevron and the demise of the “administrative state”

    • Heritage senior legal fellow Sarah Parshall Perry posted on X (formerly Twitter) that “SCOTUS overrules the judicially created Chevron doctrine - which has for years given federal executive agencies authority never congressionally delegated to them. … This is a massive shift in judicial dynamics that will curb the advances of the administrative state.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • The Center for Renewing America, headed by former Trump Cabinet official Russ Vought, posted a clip from War Room with a quote from CRA senior fellow Jeff Clark saying, “The Deep State wanted to create a 4th branch of government who would rule over the American people … the Supreme Court wiped that away today.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Texas Public Policy Foundation executive Chuck DeVore posted on X that “Chevron Deference is dead. … Now Congress will have to do its job, not simply passing vague laws and then letting unelected bureaucrats do their dirty work.” DeVore also claimed that former President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court appointments “made it happen.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Moms For Liberty co-founder Tiffany Justice posted: “Today was a good day for limiting the power of the federal bureaucracy. Chevron is overruled. The Supreme Court limits federal agency power. Citizens have rights in court that federal agencies can’t take away.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • The Job Creators Network released a press statement from its CEO  saying, “The Supreme Court’s decision to overrule the Chevron precedent is a major victory for American small businesses. It finally reins in out-of-control regulators and bureaucrats who have for too long acted as unelected and unaccountable enemies of Main Street.” The group posted a similar message on X, adding, “Overregulation is one of the biggest challenges small businesses face, and this ruling is transformational in diminishing this threat and regulators’ power.” [Job Creators Network, 6/28/24, 6/28/24]
    • Competitive Enterprise Institute President Kent Lassman posted: “It’s morning in the Imperial City. Big changes demand long-term vision and a steady application of the correct combination of tools. Today radical and necessary changes to the regulatory state took big steps forward toward the light of liberty.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Heartland Institute policy adviser Jeff Stier responded, “Don’t believe the headline ‘SCOTUS guts regulators’ power to protect the environment & public health. The end of Chevron Deference is a win for the constitution & We the People. Elected representatives must clearly delegate any power it wants to delegate.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Former Trump HUD Secretary Ben Carson of the American Cornerstone Institute wrote, “This is a huge victory for limited, constitutional government and reining in the unelected administrative state.” Carson added that his group “urged the Supreme Court to reach just this conclusion in the amicus brief we submitted. We are proud to have played a part in this monumental win.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Former Trump DHS official and Center for Renewing America senior fellow Ken Cuccinelli wrote that “we have another part of our constitution back … Chevron deference is GONE!” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Horace Cooper of the National Center for Public Policy Research posted that “Supreme Court takes sledgehammer to federal agency power in Chevron case.” He added, “Make no mistake, having a majority of constitutionalists on the Supreme Court ultimately does protect the American people.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
  • Right-wing media figures and climate deniers cheer on the Supreme Court decision overturning 40 years of legal precedent

    • Mike Davis, a former law clerk for Justice Neil Gorsch and president of the Article III Project, told Steve Bannon on War Room that the doctrine was unconstitutional and the decision “means a lot for real Americans and real America.” Davis said. “This just shows you how important elections are and how consequential Trump's first term was. He transformed the left-of-center Supreme Court to the Clarence Thomas Supreme Court.” [Real America’s Voice, Steve Bannon’s War Room, 6/28/24]
    • The Federalist CEO and co-founder Sean Davis wrote: “BREAKING: In a major blow to the unelected administrative state, the Supreme Court has overruled the Chevron doctrine, which required courts to defer to the legal interpretations of unelected bureaucrats.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • National Review senior editor Charles C.W. Cooke: “Chevron is overruled. A great day for the Constitution.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Climate denier and frequent Fox News contributor Steve Milloy wrote on X that the decision was a “HUGE WINNING,” adding that Trump “made this possible!” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24, Media Matters, 10/13/21]
    • Daily Signal editor Tyler O’Neil posted on X that the ruling is “a huge step forward for holding the administrative state—and the deep state—accountable.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Cato Institute Senior Vice President Clark Neily wrote that “SCOTUS just withdrew a deep reservoir of power from the administrative state.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Carrie Severino, a former legal clerk for Justice Clarence Thomas and the president of the Leonard Leo-connected Concord Fund (formerly the Judicial Crisis Network), wrote: “Good riddance to Chevron deference, which put a two-ton judicial thumb on the scale of government bureaucrats against the little guy. This is a big victory for the rule of law.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24; ProPublica, 10/11/23; CNN, 6/13/24]
    • Reason Magazine editor Billy Binion wrote: “Congress has ceded its authority to executive agencies & given unelected bureaucrats immense power to interpret vague laws. Today's Chevron decision will force the legislative branch to do its job: Write laws that make sense. That's not a scandal.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Former GOP candidate and climate denier Vivek Ramaswamy wrote on X that “this is a *seismic* ruling,” claiming Chevron deference “has poisoned our country in recent decades.” He added that “unelected bureaucrats in the administrative state” will no longer make the laws, and “America is better off for it.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24; Rolling Stone, 8/23/23]
    • The Daily Wire’s Michael Knowles posted a video about the “Earth-shattering, groundbreaking” decision, saying that the Supreme Court “just gutted the deep state” and that it’s nearly as consequential for the right as Roe v. Wade getting overturned. “Conservatives have considered this a major source of the unaccountability of government, the bloat of government, the capricious rule that we have,” Knowles said in the video. “I’m not saying that it rises to the level of a Dobbs decision overruling Roe,” he concluded, “but in some ways, from a structure of government perspective, it sort of does.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Far-right influencer Ian Miles Cheong wrote on X that the decision prevents agencies from “coming up with onerous regulations that force companies to pay salaries to government observers whose job is to act like unwanted nannies,” celebrating that it “stops federal agencies from being able to force compliance with mask mandates and COVID vaccines onto companies.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]
    • Climate denier Chris Martz wrote that the Chevron doctrine “allowed unelected bureaucrats to interpret the law as they pleased and create boundless rules and regulations on businesses,” calling the new ruling overturning it “a major win for the Constitution.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24; AFP Fact Check, 5/1/24]
    • Epoch Times contributor Hans Mahncke wrote: “The invalidation of the Chevron deference, which gave DC bureaucrats largely unchecked authority to create rules and regulations, is arguably the most significant constraint of the administrative state in generations. This is a major victory for rule of law and democracy.” [Twitter/X, 6/28/24]