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house Bill H.R. 427

Should Congress Have More Power to Approve (or Reject) Major Regulations?

Argument in favor

Federal agencies have issued costly regulations without oversight from Congress or much engagement from the general public. This would allow both to reassert their voice in the regulatory process.

Curmudgeon's Opinion
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07/28/2015
What is a regulation, but a law . And which branch of gov is tasked with generating laws? Get my drift? Laws often have costs, to monitor their compliance, not merely the onerous costs to those impacted. Enforcement of compliance is an expense which requires budgeting. And which branch of government is specifically tasked with the budget? Now do you see where we lately have run off the rails?
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Stephen's Opinion
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07/28/2015
Delegating legislative authority to regulatory agencies to begin with is clearly unconstitutional.
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Mark's Opinion
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07/28/2015
Absolutely ridiculous unelected people are determining control over American people and industry.
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Argument opposed

The regulations that would have to be approved or rejected by Congress under this bill would be the most significant impact on the environment, the economy, and public health.

PacificCstar's Opinion
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08/15/2015
Congress has the power and responsibility to delegate. They are not educated in all specialties and decisions should be delegated to those with expertise.
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Wbbelvin's Opinion
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02/16/2016
This bill violates current constitutional jurisprudence and would be struck down as such. Not only is this Congressional overreach, but the immediate future litigation would be a massive waste of taxpayer money.
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singinghawk926's Opinion
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10/23/2016
Congress does not need ANY more power until it proves it can be responsible enough to work with the Executive Branch of government regardless of who the Executive, i.e. the President, is! Anyway, changes in regulations come under the powers of the Executive Branch. The Legislative Branch, i.e., Congress, has the power to make laws (hence, the name: Legislative Branch), the powers of Advise & Consent and the power to declare war. The Executive Branch executes the laws made by the Legislative Branch. Separation of Powers, designed into our Constitution to prevent tyranny!
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    What is a regulation, but a law . And which branch of gov is tasked with generating laws? Get my drift? Laws often have costs, to monitor their compliance, not merely the onerous costs to those impacted. Enforcement of compliance is an expense which requires budgeting. And which branch of government is specifically tasked with the budget? Now do you see where we lately have run off the rails?
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    Congress has the power and responsibility to delegate. They are not educated in all specialties and decisions should be delegated to those with expertise.
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    Delegating legislative authority to regulatory agencies to begin with is clearly unconstitutional.
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    This bill violates current constitutional jurisprudence and would be struck down as such. Not only is this Congressional overreach, but the immediate future litigation would be a massive waste of taxpayer money.
    Like (13)
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    Absolutely ridiculous unelected people are determining control over American people and industry.
    Like (12)
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    Congress does not need ANY more power until it proves it can be responsible enough to work with the Executive Branch of government regardless of who the Executive, i.e. the President, is! Anyway, changes in regulations come under the powers of the Executive Branch. The Legislative Branch, i.e., Congress, has the power to make laws (hence, the name: Legislative Branch), the powers of Advise & Consent and the power to declare war. The Executive Branch executes the laws made by the Legislative Branch. Separation of Powers, designed into our Constitution to prevent tyranny!
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    Executive branch should have never usurped this power in the first place.
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    This obviously came about as a way to enable a do nothing congress to do even less. It's time for congress to put up or shut up! They have a Constitutionally mandated duty to perform. They should not be allowed to abdicate that responsibility.
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    It appears some are confusing the federal constraints of Congress' power. Congress must utilize outside bureaucracies to regulate businesses, otherwise oversight and enforcement do not truly exist. Federal bureaucracies are accountable to Congress through their investigatory arms as well as their control of the purse.
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    Our current congress lacks the knowledge base and due care required for them to provide adequate oversight. Indeed most will cater to Industry with a total lack of regard to the citizens that inhabit this nation. Those representatives that vote "yes" do so to benefit themselves only. That includes my Representative who ONLY considers his own interests.
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    If Congress is insufficiently educated in a particular field, it is nevertheless constitutionally inappropriate for them to appoint some body or department of experts as an autonomous legislative group with authority over that field. They would be better served to consult with experts from that field and retain the legislative process within their own branch of government. It is an egregious violation of the Constitution that all of these agencies and departments exist and have unilateral power to craft legislation. The alleged expertise of people in those departments is a pathetic excuse.
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    The more regulation we can keep out of the hands of elected officials who have little to no knowledge of the issues the better. I would rather someone who at least went through a hiring process in charge of policies on the environment and education than someone who just happened to have a great smile and a pocket full of some billionaire's cash. Not to mention the legislative branch of our government can only agree on raising their own pay, so even less will be accomplished in the hands of these petulant narcissists.
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    It's all about legislation without representation: Congress has delegated much legislative responsibility, in the guise of regulation, to the bureaucracy (the executive branch) which has relieved them of responsibility for the impact of those regulations. Congress needs to take back that control and responsibility so that we can once again hold our representatives accountable for the laws created on our behalf.
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    Congress has too much power as it is. Absolutely not!
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    To understand my support of the REINS act, I think it is important to understand a few things about the field of administrative law. Congress has passed numerous laws which delegate to administrative agencies the ability make and promulgate rules which bear the force of law. Rules made by agencies must be made pursuant to some intelligible principle found in the enabling statute. Rules made by administrative agencies must also comport with notice and comment requirements laid out in the Administrative Procedures Act. These rules are then recorded in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Starting in the 1930s congress has routinely delegated increasingly large amounts of authority to various administrative agencies. For the most part, the courts have given agencies extreme deference in making rules. The courts have generally deferred to agency rules so long as there is some amount of ambiguity in the statute and the agency interpretation can,in some conceivable way, be considered reasonable. This deference is accorded to agencies even when their interpretation is not the most natural interpretation of the statute. The Supreme Court has even gone so far as to give agencies deference in interpreting their own rules. As a result of the continual proliferation of statutes which delegate rule making authority to agencies, the CFR has grown at an ever increasing rate. In each year since 2010, over 20,000 new rules were published in the CFR. In 2015 this constitute over 80,000 pages of regulations. This trend ought to be troubling for several reasons. The first is the lack of democratic accountability which administrative agencies are subject to. The members of agencies are typically appointed by the president and are largely insulated form democratic pressures. The second concern I hold about administrative agencies was laid out by James Madison in Federalist No 62 "It will be of little avail to the people, that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood." Regulatory agencies also supplant the role of congress as the sole source of legislative authority. Article 1 section 1 states in relevant part "All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States." In many cases, the rules made by administrative agencies have the effect of turning the agency into a sort of mini legislature with the ability to regulate industries in way never envisioned when the enabling statute was passed. Finally, I would argue that the growth of administrative agencies should be seen as troubling because of the problem of regulatory capture. Regulatory capture is the tendency, noted by numerous academics, for control of regulatory agencies to be captured by members of the industry they purport to regulate. This occurs as a result of the problem of dispersed costs and concentrated benefits. Industries stand to gain significantly by controlling agencies while the costs to the public are relatively small when spread across the broader public. The REINS act would attempt to address some of these concerns by requiring congress to vote on proposed regulations which would have a significant impact on the US economy.
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    The legislature needs to be empowered in this age of executive fiat.
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    No way in hell. Congress is broke and crooked. No more power for government offices.
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    It is time for Congress to reassert it regulatory oversight.
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    Regulations are usually the practicle application of passed laws. I dislike regulations, but this would effectively grind rule making to a halt. If there is a law passed, we need to know the rules for implementation, otherwise we are all stuck in limbo.
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    This congress can't pass a budget or do their constitutional duties. Expecting them to oversee all major legislation makes me laugh.
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