Congressional Republicans are filing a brief in opposition to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations requiring permits for some greenhouse gas emissions.
The agency’s action, the lawmakers said in a "friend of the court" brief filed on Monday, amounts to a power grab from the executive branch.
“The EPA continually attempts to sidestep Congress and expand its role in advancing a partisan political agenda,” Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), the House Science Committee chairman, said in a statement. “Disregarding the authority of Congress to set environmental policy undermines the democratic process. The Obama administration continues to overstep its constitutional authority as it attempts to enact job-killing regulations.”
The 2009 rules are separate from in-the-works regulations limiting air pollution from coal- and gas-fired power plants. Those new rules are a central component of President Obama’s climate agenda for his second term.
Opponents of the EPA's permitting rules say that the EPA did not have enough evidence to support issuing the new rules on power plants in addition to cars and trucks.
In a statement, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellSanders set for clash with Trump’s budget pick Cabinet picks boost 2018 Dems Overnight Finance: Trump takes US out of Pacific trade deal | WH says Trump has left his businesses | Lobbyists expect boom times MORE (R-Ky.) said that the rules were part of the Obama administration’s ”war on coal and Kentucky jobs.”
In addition to Smith and McConnell, Sen. Rand PaulRand PaulTrump's CIA chief clears Senate Overnight Defense: Trump nominates Air Force secretary | Senate clears CIA director | Details on first drone strike under Trump Dems blast Trump plans for deep spending cuts MORE (R-Ky.) and Reps. Andy BarrAndy BarrHow we can boost the economy through foreign direct investment Wells Fargo scandal strikes fear into smaller rivals Consumer bureau remains partisan target after Wells Fargo settlement MORE (R-Ky.), Brett GuthrieBrett GuthrieOvernight Tech: Trump meets Alibaba founder | Uber to make some data public | GOP Lawmakers tapped for key tech panels House GOP defense policy bill conferees named Overnight Regulation: Fight brews over minor leaguers' salaries MORE (R-Ky.), Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) and Ed WhitfieldEd WhitfieldWhy Republicans took aim at an ethics watchdog What Azerbaijan wants from Israel? Overnight Energy: Green group sues Exxon over climate science MORE (R-Ky.) also signed on to the brief.
The high court is scheduled to hear arguments on six challenges to a 2012 appeals court ruling, which upheld the regulations, on Feb. 24.