White House asks court to dismiss suit over regulation repeals

White House asks court to dismiss suit over regulation repeals
© Getty

The Trump administration is asking a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit over its executive order requiring agencies to repeal two rules for each new regulation they issue.

Government lawyers argued in a court filing Monday that opponents of the order “ignore a 40-year history of presidential executive orders directing agencies … to revise or repeal regulatory requirements that are not necessary or cost justified.”

The administration says the president has the power to issue an order requiring agencies to cut regulations as Trump did. 

ADVERTISEMENT
The lawyers said the plaintiffs in the case — Public Citizen, the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Communications Workers of America — filed a premature claim because the administration has yet to actually end any regulations the way the order mandates. 

“Both history and precedent confirm that the latest executive order in this unbroken history is a valid exercise of the president’s Article II powers to supervise and manage the executive branch,” the lawyers wrote, referencing the order Trump signed on Jan. 30.

The White House says the executive order is designed to roll back federal regulations — a promise Trump made repeatedly during the presidential campaign — when the federal government issues new rules. 

The three groups suing over the order say the Constitution does not give the president the power to undo rules unilaterally the way Trump is attempting.

They argued the order would needlessly put health, environment and safety rules in regulators’ crosshairs when Trump's administration begins rolling out new rules. 

Trump officials have dismissed the lawsuit as presumptive and speculative.