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AG Derek Schmidt: U.S. Supreme Court agrees to hear two cases in which Kansas petitioned for hearing

Release Date: Nov 01, 2021

TOPEKA – (November 1, 2021) – The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear two cases in which Kansas is a party, the first dealing with placing limits on the Environmental Protection Agency and the second seeking to reinstate Trump administration rules for granting immigrants access to the United States, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said today.

In the first case, West Virginia v. EPA, No. 20-1530, the Supreme Court will review a lower court decision holding that the Trump administration’s repeal of the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan was arbitrary and capricious.

A group of states, including Kansas, asked the justices to determine whether Congress constitutionally authorized the Environmental Protection Agency to issue significant rules—including those capable of reshaping the nation’s electricity grids and unilaterally decarbonizing virtually any sector of the economy—without any limits on what the agency can require so long as it considers cost, non-air impacts, and energy requirements. In 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court blocked implementation of the Obama action while Kansas and others states challenged the rules in federal district court.

The second case is Arizona v. City and County of San Francisco, No. 20-1775. The Supreme Court will determine whether a group of States, including Kansas, may intervene in a lawsuit to defend a Trump administration immigration rule after its defense was abandoned by the Biden administration.

Federal law states that aliens are "inadmissible" if they are "likely at any time to become a public charge," meaning that to be admitted into the country, they must have the means to support themselves once they obtain proper documentation. This general ground of inadmissibility dates back to 1882.

In 2019, the Trump administration adopted a rule more clearly defining this requirement. After the Biden administration stopped defending the rule in court, thereby leaving in place a nationwide injunction against the rule’s application, the States moved to intervene in a pending lawsuit in support of the rule, but the lower court denied their motion.

The Supreme Court will announce dates for hearing the cases at a later time.

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