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The EPA’s Power Grab


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epas-power-grab-bill-peacockNational Review:

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan (CPP) mandates sweeping reductions of CO2 emissions from existing electrical-generation plants. The rule will dramatically increase federal regulation of the nation’s electric industry. It will impose devastating costs on working families across America — with hugely disparate impacts from one state to another. And if states comply with the CPP, the result will be a massive federal takeover of the state governments.


The assault on the dual sovereignty of the states — the federalism enshrined in our Tenth Amendment — is nothing new. Much of the battle over Obamacare turned on the attempt to force Medicaid expansion on the states, which the Supreme Court deemed a violation of the Tenth Amendment. However, with the CPP, the EPA is attempting to take federal control of states to a whole new level — perhaps hoping that the states will meekly comply rather than calling its bluff by challenging a rule based on very questionable statutory authority.


Writing in The Atlantic, Mario Loyola and Richard Epstein describe the federal takeover of the states through “cooperative federalism” programs as an effort to “turn states into mere field offices of the federal government.” Already today, they point out,

federal officials exert enormous influence over state budgets and state regulators, often behind the scenes. The new federalism replaces the “laboratories of democracy” with heavy-handed, once-size-fits-all solutions. Uniformity wins but diversity loses, along with innovation, local choice, and the Constitution’s necessary limits on government power.Scissors-32x32.png

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