Chenery unmasked: Reasonable limits on the duty to give reasons

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Although, when I [Judge Henry Friendly] began my labors [to understand Chenery], I had the hope of discovering a bright shaft of light that would furnish a sure guide to decision in every case, the grail has eluded me; indeed I have come to doubt that it exists.1 If I [Judge Patricia Wald] were to ease up on any aspect of reasoned decision making it would be on [Chenery's] "post hoc rationalization" ban prohibiting government counsel from proffering any additional explanation for the agency action that has not been fully covered in the decision itself, even though the explanation may be a winner and everyone knows that the agency would be happy to accept it. 2.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)817-880
Number of pages64
JournalUniversity of Cincinnati Law Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2012


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