President Obama has less than 2 months remaining in the White House, and while he is rushing to shove his liberal agenda down the throats of the American public, one judge has had enough.
Last week, a federal judge in Texas rejected President Obama’s executive action on new overtime rules, that would “drastically increase the number of people who would qualify for overtime pay under federal law.”
Early this year, Obama’s Department of Labor announced that they were increasing the minimum threshold for individuals eligible for overtime pay, going from $23,360 a year to $47,476 a year, which would affect more than 4 million workers.
Rather than simply accept Obama’s executive action, Judge Amos Mazzant of Texas has ruled against the administration, putting a halt to the order that was set to go into effect December 1.
In his explanation, Judge Mazzant argues that while the Department of Labor has the authority to make adjustments and updates to its rules, it cannot do so in a way that goes against the intent of the law:
[N]othing in the EAP exemption indicates that Congress intended the Department to define and delimit with respect to a minimum salary level. Thus, the Department’s delegation is limited by the plain meaning of the statute and Congress’s intent. Directly in conflict with Congress’s intent, the Final Rule states that “[w]hite collar employees subject to the salary level test earning less than $913 per week will not qualify for the EAP exemption, and therefore will be eligible for overtime, irrespective of their job duties and responsibilities.” With the Final Rule, the Department exceeds its delegated authority and ignores Congress’s intent by raising the minimum salary level such that it supplants the duties test. Consequently, the Final Rule does not meet Chevron step one and is unlawful. The Department’s role is to carry out Congress’s intent. If Congress intended the salary requirement to supplant the duties test, then Congress, and not the Department, should make that change.
Liberals are likely to attack Mazzant for his ruling, but it is important to note that the judge never offered an opinion on whether or not he found the Labor Department rule good or bad, simply that the Obama Administration had mo authority to overhaul the nation’s overtime pay rules.
While Obama may try and push his liberal agenda during his last days in office, thankfully one judge has refused to cave to the administration’s unlawful executive actions.