June 15, 2023
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH – This week, Attorney General Sean D. Reyes co-led an Amicus brief in Illumina v. Federal Trade Commission in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Utah is challenging the FTC’s attempt to block the merger of Illumina, Inc. and Grail, Inc.—two companies attempting to produce and distribute Galleri, which is a groundbreaking and potentially life-saving cancer test.
The case deals with the overreach of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), challenging the “alarming results of the excessive free rein enjoyed by FTC” as well as the “fundamentally problematic structure” of the agency. The Amicus brief states that harm is brought by the current structure of the FTC through “an agency committed to pursuing its own agenda wielding significant federal power to impede the progress of a company seeking to develop life-saving cancer screening tests.” There are dire consequences to the FTC’s oppressive overreach in this specific situation, but it is just one of many cases in which the agency has abused its delegated authority.
The attorneys general ask the federal appeals court to “rein in the ‘headless fourth branch’ by eliminating the unconstitutional statutory haven that shields FTC Commissioners from political accountability.” None of the five commissioners of the FTC can be removed by the President of the United States, giving them relentless power to impose their agenda as they deem appropriate.
Attorney General Reyes issued the following statement: “The FTC has grown too large and holds powers far outside constitutional bounds. Two companies, seeking to save Americans from cancer, should not have to jump through oppressively unreasonable and unlawful legal hoops to give hope to countless men and women.”
Utah co-led the brief with Indiana. The States of Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Nebraska, South Carolina, and Virginia joined in support of Illumina.