Clinton v. City of New York (1998)

“Qwest relies heavily upon the Supreme Court’s decision in Clinton v. City of New York (1998) to argue that Qwest ‘suffered actual injury sufficient to confer standing—and certainly a sufficient likelihood of economic injury.’ Qwest’s reliance upon Clinton is misplaced, however, because Clinton is factually distinguishable.

Clinton stands for the proposition that a party has standing to challenge the legality of a government action (in Clinton, a presidential line item veto) where that action revives ‘a substantial contingent liability [which] immediately and directly affects the borrowing power, financial strength, and fiscal planning of the potential obligor’ (in Clinton, a tax liability in excess of two billion dollars)….Qwest’s alleged injury differs from those of the plaintiffs’ in Clinton in one critical respect: while the First Report and Order may have imposed upon Qwest a contingent liability when the Commission issued the order in 1996, any such liability cannot be contingent today.”

J. Kelly, Qwest Communications, International, Inc. v. F.C.C., 240 F.3d 886, 891-892 (10th Cir. 2001).