A week after the cigar industry filed a Motion for Summary Judgment with the Court in its pending lawsuit against the U.S. Food and Drug Adninistration (FDA) two additional Amicus Curaie briefs have been filed. One jointly by four states and one by the in profit organization Cause of Action Institute (CoA).
The Motion for Summary Judgemet was filed by the Cigar Association of America (CAA), Cigar Rights of America (CRA), and International Premium Cigar and Pipe Retailers (IPCPR). A Summary Judgement is a procedural move that essentially requests the Court to promptly dispose of a case because there are no facts at issue. In this case, the trade associations are asking the court to “throw out” the FDA’s Deeming rule because it is unlawful and in violation of the Administrative Procedures Act as well as the First and Fifth Amendments to the Constitution.
Amicus Curaie is a term meaning “friend of the court”. The name for a brief filed with the court by someone who is not a party to the case, but can offer the court information that can have an impact on the matter at hand.
The Amicus Curaie filed by Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxtonl cite the FDA’s lack of a cost benefit analysis as well as how the Deeming Regularions could lead to a reduction in excise tax revenue.
Meanwhile the COA Amicus Curaie also cites the Lack of a cost benefit analysis as well as what it considers overarching power by the FDA.
“Common sense appears to be dead at the FDA,” said Patrick Massari, Assistant Vice President at CoA Institute. “Inexplicably, the FDA ignored tens of thousands of comments from the premium cigar industry, Congress, local government, media, and the citizens of the United States, particularly those affected in ways large and small by FDA’s power grab. Under this new rule, the tradition of premium, hand-rolled cigars handed down by generations will turn into a corporate profit mill.”
Opening arguments for the lawsuit are scheduled to begin on July 28, 2017.