Document Type



In the 1992 Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife decision, Justice Scalia declared that business interests subject to regulation had automatic standing to challenge regulations in court, but that where “the plaintiff is not himself the object of the government action or inaction he challenges, standing is not precluded, but it is ordinarily ‘substantially more difficult’ to establish.” This article explores the impact this differential standard for court access has on ideologically-motivated public interest plaintiffs, and suggest heightened scrutiny of standing rules under the Petition Clause of the First Amendment based on the viewpoint differential effect of current standing doctrine. This effect is most pronounced, and the argument for a new Petition Clause approach to standing is strongest, where public interest plaintiffs seek to challenge agency rulemaking action as being insufficiently protective.