Adam J. White

Research Fellow

Adam J. White is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution, and director of the Center for the Study of the Administrative State at George Mason University's Antonin Scalia Law School, where he also teaches Administrative Law. He writes widely on the administrative state, the Supreme Court, the Constitution, and regulatory policy, with special focus on energy policy and financial regulation. 

He was recently appointed to the Administrative Conference of the United States, a federal advisory board focused on improving federal agencies' practices. He also serves on the leadership council of the American Bar Association's Administrative Law Section; on the executive committee of the Federalist Society's Administrative Law Practice Group; and on the board of directors of LandCAN, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting conservation on working lands.

His articles appear in The Wall Street Journal, The Weekly Standard, Commentary, and other publications, and he is a contributing editor for National Affairs, City Journal, and The New Atlantis. He previously practiced law at Boyden Gray & Associates PLLC and Baker Botts LLP, litigating regulatory and constitutional issues. After graduating from the University of Iowa and Harvard Law School, he clerked for Judge David B. Sentelle on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. 

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Recent Commentary

Analysis and Commentary

Witness To George Will’s Flight From Politics

by Richard Reinsch, Adam J. Whitevia Library of Law and Liberty
Friday, June 2, 2017

In his latest column, George Will laments that conservatism has been “hijacked” by “scowling primitives” and “vulgarians.” A conservatism that once cheerfully and unapologetically embraced “high culture” has been overtaken by a vulgar populism, which defends main-street values against elite liberal cosmopolitans, but which increasingly embodies not intellectual argument but rather, in Lionel Trilling’s words, “irritable mental gestures” masquerading as ideas.


Diplomacy, Distrust, And The Paris Climate Accord

by Adam J. Whitevia Lawfare
Thursday, June 1, 2017

Last August, David Wirth explained to Lawfare’s readers how simple it would be for President Trump to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Accord’s nonbinding provisions on climate emission reductions: Trump “need not go through a formal withdrawal process, as required by the Agreement and international law. Instead, he need only say, ‘The United States changed its mind.’” Now that President Trump might prove Wirth right, it’s worth asking what the President thinks he is achieving by announcing a national change of mind.


In Bipartisan Reform Of The APA, Is There “Fertile Ground Here To Actually Get Something Done”?

by Adam J. Whitevia Yale Journal on Regulation
Thursday, April 27, 2017

Senators Portman and Heitkamp introduced legislation to significantly reform and modernize the Administrative Procedure Act of 1946. There is much to be written about this version of the “Regulatory AccountabilityAct,” including its provision for replacing Auer deference with a Skidmore.


Does ‘Too Big To Fail’ Mean Too Big For The Rule Of Law?

by Adam J. Whitevia Wall Street Journal
Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Blame Congress for the arbitrary nature of the ‘systemically important’ label under Dodd-Frank.


Judge Gorsuch's Back-Seat Drivers

by Adam J. Whitevia The Weekly Standard
Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Don't blame a judge for staying in his own lane.

The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection’s Unconstitutional Design

by Adam J. White
Tuesday, March 21, 2017

On March 21, 2017, Adam White testified in front of the House Committee on Financial Services on "The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection’s Unconstitutional Design."


Senate Democrats' Incoherence On Gorsuch And Executive Power

by Adam J. Whitevia The Weekly Standard
Monday, March 20, 2017

They complain that he'll be too deferential to Trump and yet not deferential enough.

Analysis and Commentary

The Structure of Regulatory Revolutions

by Adam J. Whitevia Yale Journal on Regulation
Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Today the most important book in administrative law is one that was written a half-century ago—but not by Kenneth Culp Davis, or Walter Gellhorn, or James Landis, or the other legends of administrative law. The author was a scientist, Thomas S. Kuhn, and the book is The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Everyone interested in administrative law should take a moment to read and reflect upon Kuhn’s classic book, especially as the Senate undertakes its confirmation hearing for Judge Neil Gorsuch’s nomination to the Supreme Court.


Ethics In The Executive

by Adam J. Whitevia City Journal
Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Unless President Trump and his administration put a high priority on integrity, they will see their energies drained away by investigation and opposition.


The Power Of The Presidential Pen

by Adam J. Whitevia The Weekly Standard
Monday, March 13, 2017

The benefits and pitfalls of executive orders.