Loper Bright Enterprises, Inc. v. Gina Raimondo

The Supreme Court Takes the Case to Consider the Future of Chevron

Cause of Action Institute (“CoA”) represents a group of herring fishermen from Cape May, New Jersey. They are the classic American story: family businesses grown and passed down to the next generation. But now they face an existential threat: their own government. The Magnuson-Stevens Act gives the government the authority to place “observers” on the fishermen’s boats. These government minders watch the fishermen work to make sure they don’t break any laws. It’s like carrying a state trooper in your car to make sure you don’t speed.  

But then the government ran out of money to pay for certain monitoring programs. Instead of asking Congress for more money, the government decided the fishermen must pay the salary of the third-party contractors. This can be $700 per day, which is more than a captain would make and could drive the boats out of the fishery. An industry already beleaguered by overlapping state and federal regulations, plus strict limits on how much they can catch, now must pay for the government to do its job. 

Several fishermen, represented by CoA and former U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement, have successfully petitioned the Supreme Court to take this case.

The Law is Clear 

Statutory context makes clear Congress knew how to delegate authority for industry-funded monitoring but decided not to for the herring fishery. Unfortunately, the D.C. Circuit held this silence was ambiguous and thus, due to Chevron deference, it must assume the government’s interpretation of the statue is correct.  As a result, the court allowed the government to mandate regulations that Congress never authorized. 

Overrule Chevron Deference 

Chevron Deference allows government agencies to push their regulatory authority well beyond what Congress intended in statutes—with a thumb on the scales of justice, the government almost always winsWhile the Supreme Court has stopped citing Chevron, lower courts still routinely will—it must be overturned or modified to curb this regulatory abuse. 

The Supreme Court should either overrule Chevron or clarify that unelected bureaucrats cannot compel fishermen to pay at-sea monitors without a clear authorization from Congress. This case provides that opportunity.  

What’s Next?

We are now in the merits briefing cycle, and the case will likely be argued later this fallIf your organization or client is interested in participating in the case by filing an amicus brief, please let us know by emailing Eric Bolinder at eric.bolinder@causeofaction.org.  

Download a case summary on Loper Bright Enterprises v. Raimondo here.


Media Contact

Steven Goldberg – steven.goldberg@augustco.com 

Ellen Davis ellen.davis@augustco.com 



Related Documents

Supreme Court of the United States

Opening Merits Brief

Petition for Certiorari

Reply Brief for Petitioners

Certiorari Granted


Merits Amicus Briefs in Support of the Petitioners

Atlantic Legal Foundation

The DRI Center for Law and Public Policy

Pacific Legal Foundation

Lonang Institute

Goldwater Institute

America First Legal Foundation


American Center for Law & Justice

New England Legal Foundation

Manhattan Institute & Four Legal Scholars

Foundation for Government Accountability

Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence

Cato Institute & Committee for Justice

Landmark Legal Foundation

Liberty Justice Center

David Goethel & John Haran

Buckeye Institute & National Federation of Independent Business Small Business Center

Christian Employers Alliance

Third Party Payment Processors Association

U.S. House of Representatives

Chamber of Commerce of the USA

Mountain States Legal Foundation

Senator Ted Cruz, Congressman Mike Johnson, & 34 Other Members of Congress

Advancing American Freedom & 11 Others

Electronic Nicotine Delivery System Industry Stakeholders

National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation

Competitive Enterprise Institute

Eight National Business Organizations

National Taxpayers Union Foundation

Ohio Chamber of Commerce

National Sports Shooting Foundation

New Civil Liberties Alliance

Independent Women’s Law Center & Washington Legal Foundation

State of West Virginia & 26 Other States

Strive Asset Management

American Cornerstone Institute

FPC Action Foundation & Firearms Policy Coalition

American Free Enterprise Chamber of Commerce

America First Policy Institute

Southeastern Legal Foundation & 3 Others

Governor Brian Kemp

Gun Owners of America & 13 Others

Little Sisters of the Poor Saints Peter & Paul Home

Advance Colorado Institute

Click here for a rundown of the briefs with selected quotes from each.



Fishermen File Supreme Court Opening Brief Challenging Chevron Deference

Overruling Chevron would restore justice and constitutional checks and balances among the three branches of government.

Supreme Court to Hear Fishermen’s Chevron Challenge

The Supreme Court has an opportunity to correct one of the most consequential judicial errors in a generation. 


Paul Clement on the Hugh Hewitt Show

Former Solicitor General Paul Clement has argued 100+ cases before the United States Supreme Court, but we really need SCOTUS to have him back to argue the merits of “chevron deference” in the case of Loper Bright Enterprises.


Eric Bolinder on the Steve Gruber Show


Ryan Mulvey on the Lars Larson Show

TheLarsLarsonShow · Ryan Mulvey – Why does the Chevron doctrine force fishermen to give up 20% of their pay?


Fate of NJ Fishermen in the Hands of Supreme Court

Final brief urges SCOTUS to reject fed’s attempt to sidestep the Constitution, overrule Chevron


18 State Attorneys General File Amicus Brief Urging SCOTUS Review of Chevron Deference

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ICYMI: Paul Clement; Cause of Action Institute Petition SCOTUS to Review Chevron in Fishermen Case

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NJ Fishermen Ask Supreme Court to End Unlawful, Job-Killing Mandate

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Court Filings: Loper Bright Enterprises, Inc v. Gina Raimondo

Read important filings and follow updates in the case:


Herring fishermen appeal district court decision upholding industry-killing at-sea monitoring regulations

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Family Fishermen Move to Block Industry-Killing At-Sea Monitoring Rule

Herring Fishermen are Fighting Burdensome Regulation, COVID-19, and New, Unlawful Monitoring Requirements to Stay Afloat Arlington, VA (June 8, 2020) – Cause of Action Institute (CoA Institute) today filed a motion for summary judgement on behalf of a group of New Jersey fishermen, asking a D.C. Federal Court to vacate […]


Family Fishermen Challenge Illegal, Industry-Killing At-Sea Monitoring Rule from Department of Commerce

The federal government finalized this regulation despite having no authority from Congress to do so


CoA Institute Highlights Deficiencies in Proposed Rule to Shift Burdensome Costs of At-Sea Monitoring to Commercial Fishermen

The New England Fishery Management Council (NEFMC), in coordination with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), seeks to approve and implement a controversial set of regulatory amendments that would create a new industry-funding requirement for at-sea monitoring in the Atlantic herring fishery and, moreover, create a standardized process for introducing […]



In the News

Fishermen sue Biden administration over federal regulations, David Spunt, Fox News Special Report (Video)

A Welcome Supreme Court Review of Chevron Deference, The Editorial Board, Wall Street Journal

Supreme Court to consider weakening power of federal agencies in fisheries case, Lawrence Hurley, NBC News

Fishy Politics: Government Bureaucracy for the NJ Fishing Industry, American Potential Podcast

The National Agricultural Law Center: Ag and Food Law Daily Update: August 16, 2022

Herring Fishermen Must Pay for At-Sea Federal Monitoring Program, Maya Earls, Bloomberg Law

D.C. Circuit Review – Reviewed: Looking for a Theme …, Aaron L. Nielson, Yale Journal on Regulation

Fishermen lose challenge to rule requiring at-sea monitors, Sebastien Malo, Reuters

Fishermen file lawsuit against herring at-sea monitoring rule, Chris Chase, Seafood Source