The Supreme Court’s recent decision in Arlington v. Federal Communications Commission, which empowers federal agencies to interpret ambiguities in the law even where it expands its own jurisdiction, “is an important win for all future presidents,” writes Cass Sunstein.
“For almost three decades, the court has ruled that when Congress gives a federal agency the power to issue regulations, that agency is usually authorized to interpret ambiguities in the original legislation… For more than a decade, judges and scholars have differed over what happens when an agency is deciding on its own ‘jurisdiction,’ that is, on the scope of its own authority.”
“Scalia’s opinion reflects his longstanding commitment to clarity in the law, a commitment that Thomas shares. It also reflects the majority’s belief, cutting across ideological divisions, that ambiguities in the law should be resolved by officials who are ultimately accountable to the people and likely to be experts on the issues at hand.
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