The Regulatory Reduction Commission

Regulatory reform is as urgent an issue as ever. In today’s Washington Times, Wayne Crews and I write about a reform that has nearly two decades of bipartisan support, as well as a proven track record when applied to spending cuts: a Regulatory Reduction Commission. Here’s how it would work:

Both spending and regulations are almost impossible to cut using conventional political means. Yet one approach was tried in the 1990s that had some success: the Base Closure and Realignment Commission (BRAC).

When the Cold War ended, America no longer needed such a large military. Because no member of Congress would vote to close an unneeded military base in his own district or state, the independent BRAC commission’s job was to give Congress an omnibus package of bases to vote on closing, without amendment. This approach was able to overcome the usual vote-trading and back-scratching, and the package passed. The Pentagon (and taxpayers) saved piles of money.

Since then, Mr. Mandel, Mr. Gramm and analysts across the political spectrum all have had the same thought: Using BRAC as a model with a proven track record for cutting unnecessary spending, can a similar mechanism be extended to repealing unneeded regulations?

It can. All it takes is a bit of courage from Congress and President Obama. Hopefully that isn’t asking too much.

Read the whole thing here.