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June 28, 2017

The Hill: Republicans fear onslaught of green group lawsuits

Republican lawmakers on Wednesday held a hearing to address what they fear is “excessive litigation” against the Interior Department from green groups and other liberal activists. …

Democratic lawmakers dismissed those worries, saying the lawsuits are important to holding the agencies accountable. And they rejected claims the suits were financially motivated.

“[The Equal Access to Justice Act] was enacted to give citizens the ability to challenge the government regardless of their socioeconomic status,” Rep. Nanette Barragán (D-Calif.) said. “It also assures that our civil justice system does not exclude the most vulnerable among us.”

The act helps the winning side’s lawyers collect fees in cases against the government.