The Federal Register is the daily depository of rules and regulations. Today, the count stood at 86,256 pages, with three weeks to go for Joe Biden’s administration.
The all-time record was set by Barack Obama in his final year with 95,894 pages.
Until today, the second-highest spot was held by Donald Trump. That’s somewhat counterintuitive, but is partly explained by the fact that Trump’s regulatory agenda was driven by a cost-cap effort calling for the elimination of at least two rules whenever a significant regulatory action was added.
Given the Administrative Procedure Act, the Trump administration could not simply eliminate a rule. A new rule would need to be written to replace or streamline what was already there. While George W. Bush does squeak in with a ranking, notable is that Obama holds six of the top 10 spots. This can be seen in the chart below (updated regularly) depicting the 20 highest Federal Register page counts.
While Biden is unlikely to top Obama’s record count without a major rules dump, each day between now and December 31 he’ll be setting a new record for second place. Ninety thousand pages would not be a surprise, however. At this point, the page count has topped 80,000 seven times.