There are many regulations issued by ex-President Obama that the current Administration would like to rescind. But if you have been following this issue, you would have probably heard that only new regulations passed within the last 60 days can be rescinded by President Trump. In fact it appears the law may not be so limiting. One of the authors of the Congressional Review Act of 1996 (CRA), Todd Gaziano says the law gives the Republicans much more power to overrule the regulations. Scott Johnson posted on the PowerLine website “Review This.” A review of Kim Strassel’s WSJ posting “A GOP regulatory game changer”—(Behind a paywall.).
“The accepted wisdom in Washington is that the CRA can be only used against new regulations, those finalized in the past 60 legislative days. That would allow the Republicans to reach back to June 2016 , teeing up 180 rules or so for override. Included are biggies like the Interior Department’s “streams” rule, the Labor Department’s overtime-pay rule, and the Environmental Protection Agency’s methane rule.
“But what Mr Gaziano told Republicans on Wednesday was that the CRA grants them far greater powers, including the extraordinary ability to overrule regulations even back to the start of the Obama administration. The CRA also would allow the GOP to dismantle these regulations quickly, and to ensure those rules can’t come back, even under a future Democratic president. No kidding.”
Strassel goes on to explain”
“ It turns out that the first line of the CRA requires any federal agency promulgating a rule to submit a “report” on it to the House and Senate. The 60 day clock starts either when the rule is published or when Congress receives the report—which ever comes first.
“There was always intended to be consequences if agencies didn’t deliver these reports,” Mr. Gaziano tells me. “And while some Obama agencies may have been better at sending reports, others, through incompetence or spite, likely didn’t.” Bottom line: There are rules for which there are no reports. And if the Trump administration were now to submit those reports—for rules implemented long ago—Congress would be free to vote the regulations down.”
Also from the posting is the following:
Some of the regulations that deserve to be overruled may have followed the rule by submitting a report to Congress which apparently makes them exempt. Let’s hope that no report was submitted for the most of them.