Federal regulation cost American businesses a shocking $1.75 trillion in 2008, more than individual and corporate income tax burdens combined. Those costs of doing business are passed on to consumers in higher prices for goods and services.
Clearly, something horribly amiss in the regulatory process.
On Wednesday, the House of Representatives is scheduled to vote onHR.10 / S.299, the REINS Act (Regulations From the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act), which puts the brakes on costly federal regulation by directly holding our elected officials responsible for their actions.
The Constitution entrusts our elected representatives in Congress with legislative power, not unelected, unaccountable federal bureaucrats!
The REINS Act helps to correct this problem. Whenever an agency seeks to finalize a new "major" regulation (one with an economic impact of $100 million or more) Congress must first vote to approve it, and the President must sign it before it can take effect. While I believe all regulations must be specifically approved by elected representatives, HR.10 / S.299 is an important small step in the right direction.
Unfortunately, the REINS Act won’t be a silver bullet to stop every costly regulation, but it will ensure that when a major new regulation takes effect every citizen will know exactly who voted for it and will be able to hold them accountable.
If I were able to amend this legislation, lower the threshold from $100 million to $1 million. I would also include a requirement that all existing regulations with the same $100 million economic impact also go through the same congressional and executive scrutiny if not abolished within 180 days of enactment of HR.10 / S.299.
Congress must rein in excessive federal regulation beginning with the REINS Act. HR.10 / S.299 must become law immediately.