What Happens When Trump Judges Confront Trump Administration Deregulation?
In 2017, the National Highway Transportation Safety Authority (NHTSA) delayed a scheduled increase in penalties imposed on automakers for failing to comply with Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. Then, in 2019, NHTSA rolled back the penalties to their 1996 levels. Several blue states and environmental groups sued in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. As luck would have it, the case was assigned to three judges appointed by President Donald Trump: Richard Sullivan, Michael Park, and William Nardini. So the Trump Administration should have won, right? Not so fast.
In a unanimous opinion issued today, the panel ruled that NHTSA’s reconsideration and reduction of the penalty was untimely and unlawful. Here is the beginning of Judge Nardini’s opinion for the court explaining the opinion:
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