Congressman Lamar Smith (TX-21) today joined House Republicans in voting to rein in federal regulations that burden businesses and stymie economic growth. The House of Representatives passed the Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act (H.R. 367) by a vote of 232-183.
The bill prevents the federal government from imposing regulations that have an economic impact of $100 million or more without congressional approval. The bill gives the people's representatives in Congress the authority to vote on costly regulations before they are imposed on the American people. Congressman Smith is an original cosponsor of the REINS Act.
Congressman Smith: "The American people today face an onslaught of unnecessary federal regulations from the Obama administration. From Obamacare to the never-ending list of EPA rules, government regulation has become a barrier to economic growth and job creation. In 2012 alone, unnecessary regulation imposed an estimated burden of $1.8 trillion.
"The American people want job creation, not more regulations. We need to encourage businesses to expand, not tie them up with red tape. The REINS Act reins in out-of-control federal regulations that burden small businesses and job creators. It ensures that businesses are free to spend more, invest more, and produce more in order to create more jobs for American workers."
In the 112th Congress, as Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Congressman Smith led the charge against the Obama administration's overregulation. Under his leadership, the House of Representatives passed six bills to rein in regulations and restore accountability to the regulatory process, including the REINS Act.
Key provisions of the REINS Act include the following:
- Requires agencies to submit major regulations to Congress for approval.
- Guarantees no major regulation becomes effective until Congress approves it.
- Guarantees fast up or down votes on major rules--Congress must act within 70 legislative days.
- Guarantees that accountability for imposing the heaviest burdens on America's economy falls where it should--with the people's elected representatives in Congress.