Report: Congress Must REIN in Washington Regulators and Save People from Crushing Regulatory Burden

Congress and the president have an opportunity to stop costly regulations that make it hard for businesses to succeed and create jobs. Specifically, Congress should pass the Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act and send it to the president, urges a new Competitive Enterprise Institute report.

"Congress has the opportunity – and responsibility – to rein in large regulations that kill jobs and make it hard for small businesses to succeed. For too long the executive branch has gotten away with runaway regulations that impose big costs on businesses with few benefits. The REINS Act is the way that Congress can tell the president ‘no’ on bad regulations," said Ryan Young, author of the report, REINing in Regulatory Overreach.

Passing the REINS Act should be a high priority because federal regulations are costing the American economy almost $1.9 trillion, imposing a $15,000 hidden tax on every American household. The REINS Act would force Congress to take action.

The REINS Act would:

  • Require Congress to vote on all new "major rules." A major rule is an executive branch regulation that costs $100 million or more annually.
  • Require agencies to send Congress a cost-benefit analysis on major rules before they are implemented.
  • Give Congress 70 legislative days for both chambers to vote on a major rule; if the vote fails, so does the regulation.
  • Give the president only limited and temporary powers to reject Congress’s disapproval of a major rule.

The House of Representatives has already passed the REINS Act, but it has been stalled in the Senate. The CEI report urges the Senate to pass the bill during the November lame duck session and send it to the president, despite an earlier veto threat by President Obama. Alternately, the new Congress could pass the REINS Act in 2017 and send it to President-elect Donald J. Trump.

The REINS Act is sponsored by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Rep. Todd Young (R-Ind.).

View the report: REINing In Regulatory Overreach by Ryan Young