Overnight Regulation: Supreme Court rejects GOP redistricting challenge

Welcome to Overnight Regulation, your daily rundown of news from the federal agencies, Capitol Hill and beyond. It's Monday evening here in Washington and I'm looking forward to watching Obama eat with Anthony Bourdain in September. http://bit.ly/1TqTwsp

Here's the latest. 

 

THE BIG STORY 

The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a Republican challenge to redistricting in Virginia, leaving in place a map that could prove more favorable to Democrats.  

The court unanimously held that Reps. Rob WittmanRobert (Rob) Joseph WittmanVirginia Port: Gateway to the economic growth Republican lawmakers ask Trump not to delay Pentagon cloud-computing contract Overnight Defense: Latest on House defense bill markup | Air Force One, low-yield nukes spark debate | House Dems introduce resolutions blocking Saudi arms sales | Trump to send 1,000 troops to Poland MORE and other Republicans from Virginia, including Reps. Randy ForbesJames (Randy) Randy ForbesToo much ‘can do,’ not enough candor Trump makes little headway filling out Pentagon jobs Why there's only one choice for Trump's Navy secretary MORE and David Brat, lacked standing to pursue their appeal because none of them could show they were injured by the redistricting plan.

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The case, Wittman v. Personhuballah, centers on Virginia's 3rd Congressional District, which is now represented by Rep. Bobby ScottRobert (Bobby) Cortez ScottDemocrats: Trump plan could jeopardize 500,000 children's free school meals Lawmakers, press hit the courts for charity tennis event House approves bill raising minimum wage to per hour MORE (D), the commonwealth's only black congressman.

Two Virginia voters -- Gloria Personhuballah and James Farkas -- challenged the way the district was redrawn in 2012, arguing that the Republican-controlled legislature violated the Voting Rights Act by packing black voters into Scott's district to make surrounding areas better for white candidates.

A lower court agreed and tossed out the Virginia redistricting plan. It elicited and ultimately settled on an alternative, neutral redistricting plan during the remedial phase of litigation.

In their appeal, Wittman, Forbes and Brat argued that, in the remedy for the unconstitutional 2012 plan, a portion of their electorate was replaced with Democrats, reducing the likelihood that they'll win reelection. 

The Supreme Court disagreed. In their six-page ruling, the justices said Wittman and Brat had not identified any evidence to support their claim of injury. Forbes, meanwhile, might have had standing to sue at the start of the appeal, the justices ruled, but doesn't now. 

"Originally Representative Forbes argued that he would abandon his campaign in District 2 and run in District 4 if this court ruled in his favor," Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in the opinion of the court. "Now, however, he has informed the court that he will continue to seek election in District 2 regardless of this appeal's outcome. Given this change, this court does not see how any injury that Forbes might have suffered is 'likely to be redressed by a favorable judicial decision.' "

Republican Reps. Bob GoodlatteRobert (Bob) William GoodlatteImmigrant advocacy groups shouldn't be opposing Trump's raids Top Republican releases full transcript of Bruce Ohr interview It’s time for Congress to pass an anti-cruelty statute MORE, Morgan GriffithHoward (Morgan) Morgan GriffithThe 27 Republicans who voted with Democrats to block Trump from taking military action against Iran Overnight Energy: Senate Dems introduce Green New Deal alternative | Six Republicans named to House climate panel | Wheeler confirmed to lead EPA Six Republicans named to House climate panel MORE, Scott RigellEdward (Scott) Scott RigellGOP rushes to embrace Trump GOP lawmaker appears in Gary Johnson ad Some in GOP say Trump has gone too far MORE, Robert HurtRobert HurtThe Hill's Morning Report — Presented by the Coalition for Affordable Prescription Drugs — GOP faces ‘green wave’ in final stretch to the midterms Democrat defeats controversial chair of House Wall Street subpanel Republican groups launch final ad blitz in key House battlegrounds MORE and Barbara Comstock, as well as two former House members from the state, Eric CantorEric Ivan CantorEmbattled Juul seeks allies in Washington GOP faces tough battle to become 'party of health care' 737 crisis tests Boeing's clout in Washington MORE and Frank WolfFrank Rudolph WolfDOJ opinion will help protect kids from dangers of online gambling Vulnerable Republican keeps focus as Democrats highlight Trump Bolton could be the first national security chief to prioritize religious freedom MORE, also participated in this case, but only Forbes, Wittman and Brat claimed to have standing once the case got to the Supreme Court.

The court held that a party only has Article III standing if they can show they've suffered an "injury in fact," that the injury is "fairly traceable" to the conduct being challenged and that the injury will likely be "redressed by a favorable decision." 

"Since the Commonwealth of Virginia has not pursued an appeal, only the intervenors currently attack the District Court's decisions striking down the enacted plan," Breyer wrote. "And an intervenor cannot step into the shoes of the original party unless the intervenor independently fulfills the requirements of Article III." 

Court watchers say Monday's decision could help Democrats pick up seats in Virginia this November.

Carl Tobias, a law professor at the University of Richmond School of Law, said Democrats might have a shot at winning the 2nd and 4th districts. 

Tobias argued that David McEachin, a Democrat, could win the 4th District seat that Forbes is vacating to run in the 2nd District. And though Rigell, who is stepping down, has endorsed Forbes in the new district, Tobias said the redistricting could shift the voter makeup enough for a Democrat to win. http://bit.ly/1RlhIEY

 

THE HILL EVENT

Join us 5/24 for State of the Sharing Economy: A Discussion on the Future of Cross-Border Commerce, featuring conversations with Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Navdeep Bains, Canadian Minister of Innovation, Science, and Economic Development. Topics of discussion include: New markets created by technological innovation, the global sharing economy, and policy & regulatory reforms to protect personal and proprietary data. Register here.

 

ON TAP FOR TUESDAY

The Senate Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Fisheries, Water and Wildlife will hold a hearing to examine the implementation of the Waters of the U.S. http://1.usa.gov/1WdyIoU

The House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing to discuss Republican allegations of misconduct against IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. http://1.usa.gov/1OT0CnM

Koskinen will not appear at the hearing. http://bit.ly/1OJBjiv

The House Natural Resources Committee will hold a hearing to investigate what Republicans call "the culture of corruption" at the Department of Interior. http://1.usa.gov/1TSxTeO

The House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing to discuss the surge of regulations and the burdens they impose. http://1.usa.gov/1U51th5

 

TOMORROW'S REGS TODAY 

The Obama administration will publish 225 new regulations, proposed rules, notices and other administrative actions in Tuesday's edition of the Federal Register.

-- The Federal Aviation Administration is finalizing a rule to allow travelers with medically diagnosed breathing problems to carry their oxygen machines with them on flights. 

The portable oxygen concentrator must come from a manufacturer that's approved by the Food and Drug Administration, must not contain any hazardous materials and must not interfere with aircraft systems.

The FAA said manufacturers will save $108,000 over ten years from no longer having to petition the FAA for a rulemaking with each new device they want to add to the list approved for use aboard an aircraft. http://bit.ly/1sNjIlD

-- The Federal Trade Commission is considering a rule that would allow manufacturers to post product warranty information online.

Under the Disclosure Rule, manufacturers are required to issue a written warranty on products that cost more than $15 and under the Pre-Sale Availability Rule, make that warranty information available prior to a sale for certain products.

The rule will allow that information to be displayed online at the point of sale or prior to it.  The public will have until June 17 to submit comments. http://bit.ly/1U9NWb1

 

NEWS RIGHT NOW 

House Dem leaders back chemical safety bill http://bit.ly/1NHIqNn

Supreme Court: Blacks were unconstitutionally excluded from Georgia jury http://bit.ly/1TrULrl

IRS head won't testify at impeachment hearing http://bit.ly/1OJBjiv

West Virgina AG: Stopping power plant rules will help jobs http://bit.ly/1TvhDRv

Senate Judiciary chair worried about FCC set-top box proposal http://bit.ly/1WL8nhV

Watchdog report faults TSA on Amtrak security http://bit.ly/1VfWnUA

VA secretary under fire for comparing patient wait times to Disneyland lines http://bit.ly/1YT0xRl

Fertilizer companies call off merger over Treasury tax rules http://bit.ly/1s5xLm0

Obama signs bill removing 'oriental' and 'negro' from federal laws – The Huffington Post http://huff.to/1U9JvwS

Shareholders press Exxon to face up to climate change – The New York Times http://nyti.ms/1Xs9ja5

 

QUOTE OF THE DAY 

"Today's decision by the Supreme Court does not address the fundamentally flawed ruling of the divided three-judge court, but deals solely with whether Virginia's Members of Congress had standing to bring this appeal. While the decision ends this case, nothing has changed for future districting actions elsewhere in the United States," Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) said in response to the Supreme Court ruling Monday. http://bit.ly/1RlhIEY

 

We'll work to stay on top of these and other stories throughout the week, so check The Hill's Regulation page (http://thehill.com/regulation) early and often for the latest. And send any comments, complaints or regulatory news tips our way, tdevaney@thehill.com or lwheeler@thehill.com. And follow us at @timdevaney and @wheelerlydia. Click here to sign up for the newsletter: http://bit.ly/1Vygy0F