Huawei Technologies USA v. FCC presents an exhaustive summary of modern-day administrative law, in the context of reviewing an FCC rule that excluded Huawei from federal funds as a security risk. As the Court summarized its several holdings:
Their most troubling challenge is that the rule illegally arrogates to the FCC the power to make judgments about national security that lie outside the agency’s authority and expertise. That claim gives us pause. The FCC deals with national communications, not foreign relations. It is not the Department of Defense, or the National Security Agency, or the President. If we were convinced that the FCC is here acting as “a sort of junior-varsity [State Department],” Mistretta v. United States, 488 U.S. 361, 427 (1989)
(Scalia, J., dissenting), we would set the rule aside.
But no such skullduggery is afoot. Assessing security risks to telecom networks falls in the FCC’s wheelhouse. And the agency’s judgments about national security receive robust input from other expert agencies and officials. We are therefore persuaded that, in crafting the rule, the agency reasonably acted within the broad authority Congress gave it to regulate communications.
No. 19-60896 (June 18, 2021).
, No. 19-60896 (June 18, 2021).