Emory Law Journal


Jarrod Shobe


This Article examines agency¿Congress legislative communications, which it terms ¿agency legislative history,¿ and argues that they have important, but previously underexplored, implications for the theories and practice of statutory interpretation. Agency legislative history also sheds new light on the ongoing debate over Chevron¿s domain. Agency legislative history reinforces arguments in favor of deference to agencies by raising questions about courts¿ institutional capacity to effectively uncover congressional deals, and by providing new reasons to believe that agencies may be better statutory interpreters than courts. At the same time, for the many judges skeptical of broad deference but unsure how to limit it, agency legislative history can allow for more narrowly tailored and empirically supported deference decisions that reflect the variety of ways legislation is made.