Chevron Doctrine A “Gut-Punch” for Health and Environment

( – A Supreme Court decision has just overturned the “Chevron Doctrine,” and this decision could change regulations on tobacco, medical bills, and even pharmaceuticals.

The Chevron Doctrine has been in motion for forty years; it directed courts to defer to the expertise of federal agencies when making decisions. The court’s conservative supermajority pushed for the overturn of the doctrine when looking at Loper Bright Enterprises v Raimondo and Relentless Inc v Department of Commerce.

Prof Lawrence O Gostin, an expert in health law and a professor said, “This was a gut punch for health, safety and the environment in the US. There’ll be no area where agencies act to protect the public’s health or safety or the environment that won’t be adversely affected by this ruling.”

Liberal Justice Elena Kagan said that this decision would “jolt” the legal system by taking away the doctrine that had been engraved into current and modern government.

Another ruling, which hasn’t made that big of an impact, would expand the time for people to sue agencies.

With this, some examples of changes in the legal system could be with the tobacco industry, which may have a harder time challenging regulations on vaping products, or drug dealers may face uncertainties as they invest millions into new research or development.

Some people praised the decision and were cheered on by big businesses and Republican allies alike. It “leaves no room for an unelected bureaucracy to co-opt this authority for itself,” said Senator Mitch McConnell.

Thomas Merrill, an expert on the doctrine and a Federalist Society contributor, said, “It is not overstating the matter to say that Chevron has become one of a handful of decisions – along with Marbury v Madison, Brown v Board of Education, and Roe v Wade – that are the material for a continuing collective meditation about the role of the courts and indeed of the law itself in the governance of our society.”

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