The U.S. Supreme Court will hear the complaint of San Diego radio host Ray Lucia, who was slapped by the Securities and Exchange Commission, lost his appeal to that body, and then lost at the court level.
In addition to his radio/TV work, Lucia had a lucrative business giving seminars to investors. But the securities commission charged that he was giving false information — saying he had backtested his strategy, showing that it would have worked in past markets, when in fact he had not. He lost his case before the commission, then lost his appeal to a lower court. He was barred from the investment advisory industry.
He changed strategies in going to the high court. He has charged that administrative law judges, who settle cases such as his own before the commission, are not appointed constitutionally. The commission says that administrative law judges are mere employees of the agency. Lucia argues that they are “officers” who should be appointed under the Appointments Clause of the Constitution. The Trump administration sides with Lucia.
If Lucia wins, other agencies will have to scramble to change the status of administrative law judges. That will be quite expensive.