- The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 against President Biden's attempt to create a new law allowing forgiveness of student loans.
- The decision highlights the limitations of executive agency powers and their ability to go beyond the expressed text of a statute.
- This ruling may have implications for the ATF's rules on pistol braces, bump stocks, and frames and receivers.
- The Court's decision signals a broader effort to reign in rogue agencies and their broad interpretations of statutory language.
- Agency flip-flopping, such as changes in interpretation and rescinding prior memoranda, is no longer permitted according to the Court.
- The decision emphasizes the need for clear Congressional authorization before an agency can make significant changes to the law.
Last week, the Supreme Court issued a significant decision in Biden v Nebraska that curtails the authority of executive agencies. The case, decided 6-3 against President Biden and his administration, centered around their attempt to interpret a federal law in a way that would allow for the forgiveness of billions of dollars worth of student loans.
While the case primarily dealt with non-2A issues, it has important implications for the Second Amendment context. The Court's recent decisions in the West Virginia v EPA and the second West Virginia v EPA cases showed a clear intent to stop rogue agencies from broad interpretations of statutory language. The Court is also set to review the Loper v Raimondo case, which examines the validity of the Chevron deference doctrine.
These decisions have significant implications for the ATF and its current rules regarding pistol braces, bump stocks, and frames and receivers. The Supreme Court's ruling in Biden v Nebraska further indicates that these rules are likely to be struck down. The Court's decision started by outlining the agency's flip-flopping of interpretations and the changes in their stance on student loan forgiveness.
This flip-flopping is reminiscent of the ATF's actions on issues like pistol braces and bump stocks. The ATF has issued guidance letters and memoranda stating that bump stocks and braced pistols do not meet the statutory definitions of machine guns or short-barreled rifles (SBRs). However, they later changed their interpretations and claimed that these items do fall under the NFA and GCA definitions of machine guns and SBRs.
The Supreme Court's decision in Biden v Nebraska suggests that agency flip-flopping is no longer permissible. Justice Roberts, in writing the opinion, stated that the agency's change in interpretation was akin to creating a new law and going beyond what Congress authorized. The Court emphasized the need for agencies to have clear Congressional authorization before making significant changes to the law.
This ruling adds to the growing body of evidence against the ATF's unlawful conduct and overreach. The Court's decisions in cases like West Virginia v EPA, Sackett, and potentially Loper show that the Supreme Court is actively working to rein in executive agencies. The upcoming Cargill bump stock case and other pending cases against the ATF indicate that the Court may soon address the agency's overreach in the 2A context.
While the Biden v Nebraska case may have primarily focused on student loans, its implications for agency overreach and executive authority have significant relevance to the Second Amendment. The Court's decision reinforces the limitations on agency powers and highlights the need for clear Congressional authorization. This is good news for the 2A community and may lead to the invalidation of the ATF's rules on pistol braces, bump stocks, and frames and receivers.
In conclusion, the Supreme Court's recent decision in Biden v Nebraska has important implications for executive agency authority. The Court's ruling curtails the ability of agencies to go beyond the expressed text of a statute and emphasizes the need for clear Congressional authorization. This decision, along with other recent cases, suggests that the Supreme Court is actively working to reign in executive agencies, including the ATF. The Court's rulings may lead to the invalidation of the ATF's rules on pistol braces, bump stocks, and frames and receivers. The implications of this decision extend beyond student loans and have significant relevance to the Second Amendment context.