Where’s the Epidemic of Litigiousness When You Need It? Why aren’t there more suits by right-wing public interest lawyers seeking to reverse or otherwise rein in the Obama administrations arguable executive overreach (on welfare, or DREAMERs, or health care, not to mention the NSA)? Glenn Reynolds (Instapundit.com) attempted to answer the mystery yesterday on his PJTV show.
The most commonly heard theory points to the difficulty of finding plaintiffs who have “standing” to sue–i.e. have been hurt by the purported overreach. Prof. Reynolds had some comments:
“The ‘standing’ argument is crap. There are lots of individuals and organizations who are being concretely hurt by this stuff and have a claim. I’ve seen people on Ttwitter–I’ve seen fairly well known conservatives on Twitter say nobody has standing here–and take it from me as somebody who teaches both administrative and constitutional law, that’s crap, crap, crap to the maximum crap power. Lots of people are being concretely hurt in this and I want to say to you, the right-wing public interest lawyers out there, ‘You’re a bunch of wimps if you don’t sue. What the hell is wrong with you?’ … OK, that’s my Mark Levin imitation.”[Emphasis in delivery]
Maybe all these lawsuits are out there and I just haven’t heard of them. I listen to NPR. Maybe Prof Reynolds’ own theory–you’ll have to watch the video at about the 5:25 mark to learn it–is the real explanation. In any case, I do think the courts will be fairly effective at reining in Obama, if they get the chance– especially if it seems to them that Obama and John Podesta are ready to crank the aggressive assertions of unilateral authority up another notch. What’s the Roberts Court for, if not that? ….