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Vanderbilt University Law School

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Administrative Law

Judicial review

2007

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Deference And Democracy, Lisa Schultz Bressman Jan 2007

Deference And Democracy, Lisa Schultz Bressman

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

In "Chevron, U.S.A. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc.", the Supreme Court famously held that judicial deference to agency interpretations of ambiguous statutes is appropriate largely because the executive branch is politically accountable for those policy choices. In recent cases, the Court has not displayed unwavering commitment to this decision or its principle of political accountability. This Article explores "Gonzales v. Oregon" as well as an earlier case, "FDA v. Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp.", in which the administrations possessed strong claims of accountability yet the Court did not defer to the agency determinations. In both, the Court justified ...