February 5, 2023 "Defending Our Rural Resources" with Nathan Descheemaeker (encore Dec 18, 2022)
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About our Guest Nathan Descheemaeker
Nathan Descheemaeker -and his family raise registered feeder calves in Central Montana.
Descheemaeker is a Senior Research Associate and Policy Analyst specializing in federal and local government administrative procedures, land and natural resource policymaking, local governmental relations, and program management. Nathan is also an accomplished musician and a self taught theologian witha love for the classics. Nathan has worked with local governments to identify and challenge attacks on small farm and ranch operations facing increased pressure and regulation by forces and groups outside of Montana, and many times outside of the United States.
Check out his website: Nathan Descheemaeker, Author at Liberty Sentinel
Red Pill Expo 2020 Breakout Interview 10/11/2020: Nathan Descheemaeker - YouTube
Red Pill Expo 2020 Breakout Interview 10/11/2020: Nathan Descheemaeker
1/4/2022 Connecting The Dots: Dan Happel ft. Nathan Descheemaeker
Watch "Connecting The Dots" LIVE on Brighteon.tv every Tuesday from 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm EST Connecting The Dots - danhappel.com
MUST SEE: Nathan Descheemaeker Master Class on Constitution Plus Dr Monzo (rumble.com)
MUST SEE: Nathan Descheemaeker Master Class on Constitution Plus Dr Monzo
The Most Dangerous Man on Rumble is back with another great set of Interviews. I present to you Mr. Nathan Descheemaeker, a presenter at the Red Pill Expo in Salt Lake City. To see his full presentati
Nathan Descheemaeker, Author at Liberty Sentinel
Nathan Descheemaeker, Author at Liberty Sentinel
Nathan and his family raise registered feeder calves in Montana, and he is a Senior Research Specialist and Policy Analyst specializing in federal and local government administrative procedures, land and natural resource policymaking, and local governmental relations.
Op-Ed: Unsustainable Costs and Impacts of Government Land Acquisition (northernag.net)
Op-Ed: Unsustainable Costs and Impacts of Government Land Acquisition - northernag.net
Opinion Editorial by Nathan Descheemaeker. The public land law review commission was a Congressional committee tasked with analyzing and reviewing the history of public land laws in the US and provide to congress a report which led to the codification of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act as well as other cornerstone statutes.
APR’S DEFENSE OF PROPERTY RIGHTS LACKS LEGAL UNDERPINNING - UPOM
APR’S DEFENSE OF PROPERTY RIGHTS LACKS LEGAL UNDERPINNING - UPOM
by Nathan Descheemaeker Can private property serve as a privileged sanctuary from which multi-national tax-exempt foundations can incrementally transition and consolidate millions of acres of productive agricultural lands? The APR in its paper Building a Legacy of Conservation pg. 1 states “When complete, the Reserve will consist of more than three million acres of private […]
Here is the Justice Gorsuch concurrence in West Virginia v EPA case:
SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES
Nos. 20–1530, 20–1531, 20–1778 and 20–1780
WEST VIRGINIA, et al., PETITIONERS
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY, et al.
THE NORTH AMERICAN COAL CORPORATION, PETITIONER
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY, et al.
WESTMORELAND MINING HOLDINGS LLC, PETITIONER
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY, et al.
NORTH DAKOTA, PETITIONER
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY, et al.
on writs of certiorari to the united states court of appeals for the district of columbia circuit
Justice Gorsuch, with whom Justice Alito joins, concurring.
To resolve today’s case the Court invokes the major questions doctrine. Under that doctrine’s terms, administrative agencies must be able to point to “ ‘clear congressional authorization’ ” when they claim the power to make decisions of vast “ ‘economic and political significance.’ ” Ante, at 17, 19. Like many parallel clear-statement rules in our law, this one operates to protect foundational constitutional guarantees. I join the Court’s opinion and write to offer some additional observations about the doctrine on which it rests.
One of the Judiciary’s most solemn duties is to ensure that acts of Congress are applied in accordance with the Constitution in the cases that come before us. To help fulfill that duty, courts have developed certain “clear-statement” rules. These rules assume that, absent a clear statement otherwise, Congress means for its laws to operate in congruence with the Constitution rather than test its bounds. In this way, these clear-statement rules help courts “act as faithful agents of the Constitution.” A. Barrett, Substantive Canons and Faithful Agency, 90 B. U. L. Rev. 109, 169 (2010) (Barrett).
Consider some examples. The Constitution prohibits Congress from passing laws imposing various types of retroactive liability. See Art. I, § 9; Landgraf v. USI Film Products, 511 U. S. 244, 265–266 (1994). Consistent with this rule, Chief Justice Marshall long ago advised that “a court . . . ought to struggle hard against a [statutory] construction which will, by a retrospective operation, affect the rights of parties.” United States v. Schooner Peggy, 1 Cranch 103, 110 (1801). Justice Paterson likewise insisted that courts must interpret statutes to apply only prospectively “unless they are so clear, strong, and imperative, that no other meaning can be annexed to them.” United States v. Heth, 3 Cranch 399, 413 (1806).
The Constitution also incorporates the doctrine of sovereign immunity. See, e.g., Hans v. Louisiana, 134 U. S. 1, 12–17 (1890). To enforce that doctrine, courts have consistently held that “nothing but express words, or an insurmountable implication” would justify the conclusion that lawmakers intended to abrogate the States’ sovereign immunity. Chisholm v. Georgia, 2 Dall. 419, 450 (1793) (Iredell, J., dissenting); see Seminole Tribe of Fla. v. Florida, 517 U. S. 44, 55 (1996). In a similar vein, Justice Story observed that “[i]t is a general rule in the interpretation of legislative acts not to construe them to embrace the sovereign power or government, unless expressly named or included by necessary implication.” United States v. Greene, 26 F. Cas. 33, 34 (No. 15, 258) (CC Me. 1827).
The major questions doctrine works in much the same way to protect the Constitution’s separation of powers. Ante, at 19. In Article I, “the People” vested “[a]ll” federal “legislative powers . . . in Congress.” Preamble; Art. I, § 1. As Chief Justice Marshall put it, this means that “important subjects . . . must be entirely regulated by the legislature itself,” even if Congress may leave the Executive “to act under such general provisions to fill up the details.” Wayman v. Southard, 10 Wheat. 1, 42–43 (1825). Doubtless, what qualifies as an important subject and what constitutes a detail may be debated. See, e.g., Gundy v. United States, 588 U. S. ___, ___–___ (2019) (plurality opinion) (slip op., at 4–6); id., at ___–___ (Gorsuch, J., dissenting) (slip op., at 10–12). But no less than its rules against retroactive legislation or protecting sovereign immunity, the Constitution’s rule vesting federal legislative power in Congress is “vital to the integrity and maintenance of the system of government ordained by the Constitution.” Marshall Field & Co. v. Clark, 143 U. S. 649, 692 (1892).
It is vital because the framers believed that a republic—a thing of the people—would be more likely to enact just laws than a regime administered by a ruling class of largely unaccountable “ministers.” The Federalist No. 11, p. 85 (C. Rossiter ed. 1961) (A. Hamilton). From time to time, some have questioned that assessment.1 But by vesting the lawmaking power in the people’s elected representatives, the Constitution sought to ensure “not only that all power [w]ould be derived from the people,” but also “that those [e]ntrusted with it should be kept in dependence on the people.” Id., No. 37, at 227 (J. Madison). The Constitution, too, placed its trust not in the hands of “a few, but [in] a number of hands,” ibid., so that those who make our laws would better reflect the diversity of the people they represent and have an “immediate dependence on, and an intimate sympathy with, the people.” Id., No. 52, at 327 (J. Madison). Today, some might describe the Constitution as having designed the federal lawmaking process to capture the wisdom of the masses. See P. Hamburger, Is Administrative Law Unlawful? 502–503 (2014).
Admittedly, lawmaking under our Constitution can be difficult. But that is nothing particular to our time nor any accident. The framers believed that the power to make new laws regulating private conduct was a grave one that could, if not properly checked, pose a serious threat to individual liberty. See The Federalist No. 48, at 309–312 (J. Madison); see also id., No. 73, at 441–442 (A. Hamilton). As a result, the framers deliberately sought to make lawmaking difficult by insisting that two houses of Congress must agree to any new law and the President must concur or a legislative supermajority must override his veto.
The difficulty of the design sought to serve other ends too. By effectively requiring a broad consensus to pass legislation, the Constitution sought to ensure that any new laws would enjoy wide social acceptance, profit from input by an array of different perspectives during their consideration, and thanks to all this prove stable over time. See id., No. 10, at 82–84 (J. Madison). The need for compromise inherent in this design also sought to protect minorities by ensuring that their votes would often decide the fate of proposed legislation—allowing them to wield real power alongside the majority. See id., No. 51, at 322–324 (J. Madison). The difficulty of legislating at the federal level aimed as well to preserve room for lawmaking “by governments more local and more accountable than a distant federal” authority, National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, 567 U. S. 519, 536 (2012) (plurality opinion), and in this way allow States to serve as “laborator[ies]” for “novel social and economic experiments,” New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann, 285 U. S. 262, 311 (1932) (Brandeis, J., dissenting); see J. Sutton, 51 Imperfect Solutions: States and the Making of American Constitutional Law 11 (2018).
Permitting Congress to divest its legislative power to the Executive Branch would “dash [this] whole scheme.” Department of Transportation v. Association of American Railroads, 575 U. S. 43, 61 (2015) (Alito, J., concurring). Legislation would risk becoming nothing more than the will of the current President, or, worse yet, the will of unelected officials barely responsive to him. See S. Breyer, Making Our Democracy Work: A Judge’s View 110 (2010) (“[T]he president may not have the time or willingness to review [agency] decisions”). In a world like that, agencies could churn out new laws more or less at whim. Intrusions on liberty would not be difficult and rare, but easy and profuse. See The Federalist No. 47, at 303 (J. Madison); id., No. 62, at 378 (J. Madison). Stability would be lost, with vast numbers of laws changing with every new presidential administration. Rather than embody a wide social consensus and input from minority voices, laws would more often bear the support only of the party currently in power. Powerful special interests, which are sometimes “uniquely” able to influence the agendas of administrative agencies, would flourish while others would be left to ever-shifting winds. T. Merrill, Capture Theory and the Courts: 1967–1983, 72 Chi.-Kent L. Rev. 1039, 1043 (1997). Finally, little would remain to stop agencies from moving into areas where state authority has traditionally predominated. See, e.g., Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook Cty. v. Army Corps of Engineers, 531 U. S. 159, 173–174 (2001) (SWANC). That would be a particularly ironic outcome, given that so many States have robust nondelegation doctrines designed to ensure democratic accountability in their state lawmaking processes. See R. May, The Nondelegation Doctrine is Alive and Well in the States, The Reg. Rev. (Oct. 15, 2020).
Much as constitutional rules about retroactive legislation and sovereign immunity have their corollary clear-statement rules, Article I’s Vesting Clause has its own: the major questions doctrine. See Gundy, 588 U. S., at ___–___ (Gorsuch, J., dissenting) (slip op., at 20–21). Some version of this clear-statement rule can be traced to at least 1897, when this Court confronted a case involving the Interstate Commerce Commission, the federal government’s “first modern regulatory agency.” S. Dudley, Milestones in the Evolution of the Administrative State 3 (Nov. 2020). The ICC argued that Congress had endowed it with the power to set carriage prices for railroads. See ICC v. Cincinnati, N. O. & T. P. R. Co., 167 U. S. 479, 499 (1897). The Court deemed that claimed authority “a power of supreme delicacy and importance,” given the role railroads then played in the Nation’s life. Id., at 505. Therefore, the Court explained, a special rule applied:
“That Congress has transferred such a power to any administrative body is not to be presumed or implied from any doubtful and uncertain language. The words and phrases efficacious to make such a delegation of power are well understood, and have been frequently used, and if Congress had intended to grant such a power to the [agency], it cannot be doubted that it would have used language open to no misconstruction, but clear and direct.” Ibid. (emphasis added).
With the explosive growth of the administrative state since 1970, the major questions doctrine soon took on special importance.2 In 1980, this Court held it “unreasonable to assume” that Congress gave an agency “unprecedented power[s]” in the “absence of a clear [legislative] mandate.” Industrial Union Dept., AFL–CIO v. American Petroleum Institute, 448 U. S. 607, 645 (plurality opinion). In the years that followed, the Court routinely enforced “the nondelegation doctrine” through “the interpretation of statu tory texts, and, more particularly, [by] giving narrow constructions to statutory delegations that might otherwise be thought to be unconstitutional.” Mistretta v. United States, 488 U. S. 361, 373, n. 7 (1989). In fact, this Court applied the major questions doctrine in “all corners of the administrative state,” whether the issue at hand involved an agency’s asserted power to regulate tobacco products, ban drugs used in physician-assisted suicide, extend Clean Air Act regulations to private homes, impose an eviction moratorium, or enforce a vaccine mandate. Ante, at 17; see FDA v. Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp., 529 U. S. 120, 160 (2000); Gonzales v. Oregon, 546 U. S. 243, 267 (2006); Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA, 573 U. S. 302, 324 (2014); Alabama Assn. of Realtors v. Department of Health and Human Servs., 594 U. S. ___, ___ (2021) (per curiam) (slip op., at 6); National Federation of Independent Business v. OSHA, 595 U. S. ___, ___ (2022) (per curiam) (slip op., at 6).3
The Court has applied the major questions doctrine for the same reason it has applied other similar clear-statement rules—to ensure that the government does “not inadvertently cross constitutional lines.” Barrett 175. And the constitutional lines at stake here are surely no less important than those this Court has long held sufficient to justify parallel clear-statement rules. At stake is not just a question of retroactive liability or sovereign immunity, but basic questions about self-government, equality, fair notice, federalism, and the separation of powers. See Part I–A, supra. The major questions doctrine seeks to protect against “unintentional, oblique, or otherwise unlikely” intrusions on these interests. NFIB v. OSHA, 595 U. S., at ___ (Gorsuch, J., concurring) (slip op., at 5). The doctrine does so by ensuring that, when agencies seek to resolve major questions, they at least act with clear congressional authorization and do not “exploit some gap, ambiguity, or doubtful expression in Congress’s statutes to assume responsibilities far beyond” those the people’s representatives actually conferred on them. Ibid. As the Court aptly summarizes it today, the doctrine addresses “a particular and recurring problem: agencies asserting highly consequential power beyond what Congress could reasonably be understood to have granted.” Ante, at 20.
Turning from the doctrine’s function to its application, it seems to me that our cases supply a good deal of guidance about when an agency action involves a major question for which clear congressional authority is required.
First, this Court has indicated that the doctrine applies when an agency claims the power to resolve a matter of great “political significance,” NFIB v. OSHA, 595 U. S., at ___ (slip op., at 6) (internal quotation marks omitted), or end an “earnest and profound debate across the country,” Gonzales, 546 U. S., at 267–268 (internal quotation marks omitted); see ante, at 17. So, for example, in Gonzales, the Court found that the doctrine applied when the Attorney General issued a regulation that would have effectively banned most forms of physician-assisted suicide even as certain States were considering whether to permit the practice. 546 U. S., at 267. And in NFIB v. OSHA, the Court held the doctrine applied when an agency sought to mandate COVID–19 vaccines nationwide for most workers at a time when Congress and state legislatures were engaged in robust debates over vaccine mandates. 595 U. S., at ___ (slip op., at 5); id., at ___ (Gorsuch, J., concurring) (slip op., at 3). Relatedly, this Court has found it telling when Congress has “ ‘considered and rejected’ ” bills authorizing something akin to the agency’s proposed course of action. Ante, at 20, 27 (quoting Brown & Williamson, 529 U. S., at 144). That too may be a sign that an agency is attempting to “ ‘work [a]round’ ” the legislative process to resolve for itself a question of great political significance. NFIB v. OSHA, 595 U. S., at ___ (Gorsuch, J., concurring) (slip op., at 3).4
Second, this Court has said that an agency must point to clear congressional authorization when it seeks to regulate “ ‘a significant portion of the American economy,’ ” ante, at 18 (quoting Utility Air, 573 U. S., at 324), or require “billions of dollars in spending” by private persons or entities, King v. Burwell, 576 U. S. 473, 485 (2015). The Court has held that regulating tobacco products, eliminating rate regulation in the telecommunications industry, subjecting private homes to Clean Air Act restrictions, and suspending local housing laws and regulations can sometimes check this box. See Brown & Williamson, 529 U. S., at 160; MCI Telecommunications Corp. v. American Telephone & Telegraph Co., 512 U. S. 218, 231 (1994) (MCI); Utility Air, 573 U. S., at 324; Alabama Assn. of Realtors, 594 U. S., at ___ (slip op., at 6).
Third, this Court has said that the major questions doctrine may apply when an agency seeks to “intrud[e] into an area that is the particular domain of state law.” Ibid. Of course, another longstanding clear-statement rule—the federalism canon—also applies in these situations. To preserve the “proper balance between the States and the Federal Government” and enforce limits on Congress’s Commerce Clause power, courts must “ ‘be certain of Congress’s intent’ ” before finding that it “legislate[d] in areas traditionally regulated by the States.” Gregory v. Ashcroft, 501 U. S. 452, 459–460 (1991). But unsurprisingly, the major questions doctrine and the federalism canon often travel together. When an agency claims the power to regulate vast swaths of American life, it not only risks intruding on Congress’s power, it also risks intruding on powers reserved to the States. See SWANC, 531 U. S., at 162, 174.
While this list of triggers may not be exclusive, each of the signs the Court has found significant in the past is present here, making this a relatively easy case for the doctrine’s application. The EPA claims the power to force coal and gas-fired power plants “to cease [operating] altogether.” Ante, at 24. Whether these plants should be allowed to operate is a question on which people today may disagree, but it is a question everyone can agree is vitally important. See ante, at 24–25. Congress has debated the matter frequently. Ibid.; see generally Climate Change, The History of a Consensus and the Causes of Inaction, Hearing before the Subcommittee on Environment of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, 116th Cong., 1st Sess., pt. I (2019). And so far it has “conspicuously and repeatedly declined” to adopt legislation similar to the Clean Power Plan (CPP). Ante, at 20; see American Lung Assn. v. EPA, 985 F. 3d 914, 998, n. 19 (CADC 2021) (Walker, J., concurring in part, concurring in judgment in part, and dissenting in part) (cataloguing failed legislative proposals); cf. Brown & Williamson, 529 U. S., at 144. It seems that fact has frustrated the Executive Branch and led it to attempt its own regulatory solution in the CPP. See 985 F. 3d, at 998, n. 20 (President stating that “ ‘if Congress won’t act soon . . . I will’ ”); cf. United States Telecom Assn. v. FCC, 855 F. 3d 381, 423–424 (CADC 2017) (Kavanaugh, J., dissenting from denial of rehearing en banc) (noting a “President’s intervention [may] underscor[e] the enormous significance” of a regulation).
Other suggestive factors are present too. “The electric power sector is among the largest in the U. S. economy, with links to every other sector.” N. Richardson, Keeping Big Cases From Making Bad Law: The Resurgent “Major Questions” Doctrine, 49 Conn. L. Rev. 355, 388 (2016). The Executive Branch has acknowledged that its proposed rule would force an “aggressive transformation” of the electricity sector through “transition to zero-carbon renewable energy sources.” White House Fact Sheet, App. in American Lung Assn. v. EPA, No. 19–1140 (CADC), pp. 2076–2077. The Executive Branch has also predicted its rule would force dozens of power plants to close and eliminate thousands of jobs by 2025. See EPA, Regulatory Impact Analysis for the Clean Power Plan Final Rule 3–27, 3–30, 3–33, 6–25 (Oct. 23, 2015). And industry analysts have estimated the CPP would cause consumers’ electricity costs to rise by over $200 billion. See National Mining Assn., EPA’s Clean Power Plan: An Economic Impact Analysis 2, 4 (2015). Finally, the CPP unquestionably has an impact on federalism, as “the regulation of utilities is one of the most important of the functions traditionally associated with the police power of the States.” Arkansas Elec. Cooperative Corp. v. Arkansas Pub. Serv. Comm’n, 461 U. S. 375, 377 (1983). None of this is to say the policy the agency seeks to pursue is unwise or should not be pursued. It is only to say that the agency seeks to resolve for itself the sort of question normally reserved for Congress. As a result, we look for clear evidence that the people’s representatives in Congress have actually afforded the agency the power it claims.
At this point, the question becomes what qualifies as a clear congressional statement authorizing an agency’s action. Courts have long experience applying clear-statement rules throughout the law, and our cases have identified several telling clues in this context too.
First, courts must look to the legislative provisions on which the agency seeks to rely “ ‘with a view to their place in the overall statutory scheme.’ ” Brown & Williamson, 529 U. S., at 133. “[O]blique or elliptical language” will not supply a clear statement. Ante, at 18; see Spector v. Norwegian Cruise Line Ltd., 545 U. S. 119, 139 (2005) (plurality opinion) (cautioning against reliance on “broad or general language”). Nor may agencies seek to hide “elephants in mouseholes,” Whitman v. American Trucking Assns., Inc., 531 U. S. 457, 468 (2001), or rely on “gap filler” provisions, ante, at 20. So, for example, in MCI this Court rejected the Federal Communication Commission’s attempt to eliminate rate regulation for the telecommunications industry based on a “subtle” provision that empowered the FCC to “ ‘modify’ ” rates. 512 U. S., at 231. In Brown & Williamson, the Court rejected the Food and Drug Administration’s attempt to regulate cigarettes based a “cryptic” statutory provision that granted the agency the power to regulate “drugs” and “devices.” 529 U. S., at 126, 156, 160. And in Gonzales, the Court doubted that Congress gave the Attorney General “broad and unusual authority” to regulate drugs for physician-assisted suicide through “oblique” statutory language. 546 U. S., at 267.
Second, courts may examine the age and focus of the statute the agency invokes in relation to the problem the agency seeks to address. As the Court puts it today, it is unlikely that Congress will make an “[e]xtraordinary gran[t] of regulatory authority” through “vague language” in “ ‘a long-extant statute.’ ” Ante, at 18–20 (quoting Utility Air, 573 U. S., at 324). Recently, too, this Court found a clear statement lacking when OSHA sought to impose a nationwide COVID–19 vaccine mandate based on a statutory provision that was adopted 40 years before the pandemic and that focused on conditions specific to the workplace rather than a problem faced by society at large. See NFIB v. OSHA, 595 U. S., at ___ (Gorsuch, J., concurring) (slip op., at 3). Of course, sometimes old statutes may be written in ways that apply to new and previously unanticipated situations. See Sedima, S. P. R. L. v. Imrex Co., 473 U. S. 479, 499 (1985). But an agency’s attempt to deploy an old statute focused on one problem to solve a new and different problem may also be a warning sign that it is acting without clear congressional authority. See ante, at 18.
Third, courts may examine the agency’s past interpretations of the relevant statute. See ante, at 20–21. A “contemporaneous” and long-held Executive Branch interpretation of a statute is entitled to some weight as evidence of the statute’s original charge to an agency. United States v. Philbrick, 120 U. S. 52, 59 (1887). Conversely, in NFIB v. OSHA, the Court found it “telling that OSHA, in its half century of existence, ha[d] never before adopted a broad public health regulation” under the statute that the agency sought to invoke as authority for a nationwide vaccine mandate. 595 U. S., at ___ (slip op., at 8); ante, at 18; see also Brown & Williamson, 529 U. S., at 158–159 (noting that for decades the FDA had said it lacked statutory power to regulate cigarettes). As the Court states today, “ ‘the want of [an] assertion of power by those who presumably would be alert’ ” to it is “ ‘significant in determining whether such power was actually conferred.’ ” Ante, at 21. When an agency claims to have found a previously “unheralded power,” its assertion generally warrants “a measure of skepticism.” Utility Air, 573 U. S., at 324.
Fourth, skepticism may be merited when there is a mismatch between an agency’s challenged action and its congressionally assigned mission and expertise. Ante, at 25. As the Court explains, “[w]hen an agency has no comparative expertise in making certain policy judgments, . . . Congress presumably would not task it with doing so.” Ibid. (internal quotation marks and alterations omitted). So, for example, in Alabama Assn. of Realtors, this Court rejected an attempt by a public health agency to regulate housing. 594 U. S., at ___ (slip op., at 5). And in NFIB v. OSHA, the Court rejected an effort by a workplace safety agency to ordain “broad public health measures” that “f[ell] outside [its] sphere of expertise.” 595 U. S., at ___ (slip op., at 6).5
Asking these questions again yields a clear answer in our case. See ante, at 28–31. As the Court details, the agency before us cites no specific statutory authority allowing it to transform the Nation’s electrical power supply. See ante, at 28. Instead, the agency relies on a rarely invoked statutory provision that was passed with little debate and has been characterized as an “obscure, never-used section of the law.” Ante, at 6 (internal quotation marks omitted). Nor has the agency previously interpreted the relevant provision to confer on it such vast authority; there is no original, longstanding, and consistent interpretation meriting judi cial respect. See ante, at 20–22. Finally, there is a “mismatch” between the EPA’s expertise over environmental matters and the agency’s claim that “Congress implicitly tasked it, and it alone, with balancing the many vital considerations of national policy implicated in deciding how Americans will get their energy.” Ante, at 25. Such a claimed power “requires technical and policy expertise not traditionally needed in [the] EPA’s regulatory development.” Ibid. (internal quotation marks omitted). Again, in observing this much, the Court does not purport to pass on the wisdom of the agency’s course. It acknowledges only that agency officials have sought to resolve a major policy question without clear legislative authorization to do so.
In places, the dissent seems to suggest that we should not be unduly “ ‘concerned’ ” with the Constitution’s assignment of the legislative power to Congress. Post, at 29 (opinion of Kagan, J.). Echoing Woodrow Wilson, the dissent seems to think “a modern Nation” cannot afford such sentiments. Post, at 29–31. But recently, our dissenting colleagues acknowledged that the Constitution assigns “all legislative Powers” to Congress and “bar[s their] further delegation.” Gundy, 588 U. S., at ___ (plurality opinion of Kagan, J.) (slip op., at 4) (internal quotation marks and alteration omitted). To be sure, in that case we disagreed about the exact nature of the “nondelegation inquiry” courts must employ to vindicate the Constitution. Id., at ___ (slip op., at 5). But like Chief Justice Marshall, we all recognized that the Constitution does impose some limits on the delegation of legislative power. See ibid.; Wayman, 10 Wheat., at 42–43. And while we all agree that administrative agencies have important roles to play in a modern nation, surely none of us wishes to abandon our Republic’s promise that the people and their representatives should have a mean ingful say in the laws that govern them. Cf. Rucho v. Common Cause, 588 U. S. ___, ___ (2019) (Kagan, J., dissenting) (slip op., at 7) (“Republican liberty demands not only, that all power should be derived from the people; but that those entrusted with it should be kept in dependence on the people” (internal quotation marks and alteration omitted)).6
So what is our real point of disagreement? The dissent next suggests that the Court strays from its commitment to textualism by relying on a clear-statement rule (the major questions doctrine) to resolve today’s case. Post, at 28. But our law is full of clear-statement rules and has been since the founding. Our colleagues do not dispute the point. In fact, they have regularly invoked many of these rules.7
If that’s not the problem, perhaps the dissent means to suggest that the major questions doctrine does not belong on the list of our clear-statement rules. At times, the dissent appears to dismiss the doctrine as a “get-out-of-text free car[d].” Ibid. The dissent even seems to suggest that the doctrine could threaten “the safety and efficacy of medications” or lead to “the routine adulteration of food.” Post, at 31. But then again, the dissent also acknowledges that the major questions doctrine should “sensibl[y]” apply in at least some situations. Post, at 14–15. The dissent even favorably highlights one application of the doctrine that our colleagues criticized less than a year ago. See post, at 18 (citing Alabama Assn. of Realtors, 594 U. S. ___). And, of course, our colleagues have joined other applications of the major questions doctrine in the past. See, e.g., King, 576 U. S., at 485–486; Gonzales, 546 U. S., at 267–268. Nor does the dissent really seem to dispute that a major question is at stake in this case. As the dissent observes, the agency’s challenged action before us concerns one of “the greatest . . . challenge[s] of our time.” Post, at 21. If this case does not implicate a “question of deep economic and political significance,” King, 576 U. S., at 486 (internal quotation marks omitted), it is unclear what might.8
In the end, our disagreement really seems to center on a difference of opinion about whether the statute at issue here clearly authorizes the agency to adopt the CPP. The dissent even complains that I have failed to conduct an exhaustive analysis of the relevant statutory language. See post, at 28, n. 8. But in this concurrence, I have sought to provide some observations about the underlying doctrine on which today’s decision rests. On the merits of the case before us, I join the Court’s opinion, which comprehensively sets forth why Congress did not clearly authorize the EPA to engage in a “generation shifting approach” to the production of energy in this country. Ante, at 28. In reaching its judgment, the Court hardly professes to “appoin[t] itself” “the decision-maker on climate policy.” Post, at 33. The Court acknowledges only that, under our Constitution, the people’s elected representatives in Congress are the decisionmakers here—and they have not clearly granted the agency the authority it claims for itself. Ante, at 31.
When Congress seems slow to solve problems, it may be only natural that those in the Executive Branch might seek to take matters into their own hands. But the Constitution does not authorize agencies to use pen-and-phone regulations as substitutes for laws passed by the people’s representatives. In our Republic, “[i]t is the peculiar province of the legislature to prescribe general rules for the government of society.” Fletcher v. Peck, 6 Cranch 87, 136 (1810). Because today’s decision helps safeguard that foundational constitutional promise, I am pleased to concur.