Law School Case Brief
Franklin v. Massachusetts - 505 U.S. 788, 112 S. Ct. 2767 (1992)
The President is not an "agency" under the Administrative Procedures Act and therefore, is not subject to review under the APA for abuse of discretion, although the Presidency is subject to constitutional review.
Following the 1990 census, a State lost a congressional seat and brought an action against the President of the United States and the Secretary of Commerce, among others, that challenged the reapportionment and sought injunctive relief against the Executive Branch. The district court found that assigning overseas personnel to their "home of record" for apportionment purposes was arbitrary and capricious under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 U.S.C.S. § 701 et seq., and entered an injunction directing the President to recalculate the number of representatives. On direct appeal to the United States Supreme Court, the judgment of the district court was reversed.
Did the district court err in its order of injunction against the President in the reapportionment of a congressional seat?
Upon expedited review the United States Supreme Court held: (1) the President was not an "agency" under the APA and was not subject to review under it for abuse of discretion, although the Presidency was subject to constitutional review; (2) the State had neither alleged nor shown that it would have had an additional representative if the allocation had been done some other way, therefore it had no standing; (3) even if State and two voters had had standing, the method chosen was historically sound and therefore was not an abuse of discretion; and finally, (4) injunctive relief was not a remedy, especially against the President.
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