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Public Statements

Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act of 2013

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. GOODLATTE. Mr. Speaker, on the floor of this House in 2011, the President of the United States promised the American people that ``to reduce barriers to growth and investment..... when we find rules that put an unnecessary burden on businesses, we will fix them.''

That very month, the President issued an executive order that said ``our regulatory system ..... must promote economic growth, innovation, competitiveness, and job creation.'' He said our regulatory system ``must identify and use the ..... least burdensome tools for achieving regulatory ends.'' He said our regulatory system ``must take into account benefits and costs.''

He was right. When our regulatory system doesn't do these things, it kills jobs, suppresses growth, and locks us ever further into economic stagnation. But, Mr. Speaker, those were just the President's words. His actions have been starkly different.

Since 2011--indeed, throughout the President's administration--a flood of new major regulations have been burying America's job creators and households at record levels. As a result, economic growth is down; America's competitiveness is down; job creation is down. Regulatory costs are up.

The President isn't reducing barriers to growth and investment. He isn't fixing unnecessary burdens on business. He's piling them on. To make matters worse, when Congress now declines to legislate the President's misguided policies for him, he increasingly is resorting to unilateral regulatory actions to legislate by executive fiat.

Mr. Speaker, the time is right to pass the REINS Act. The REINS Act, in one fell swoop, assures that Congress--the body to which the Constitution assigns the power to legislate--will at last stand accountable for the most significant legislative decisions imposed on the American people through regulation. And in that same fell swoop, the REINS Act puts an end to Presidential end runs around Congress through legislation cloaked as regulation.

Instead of helping REINS Act supporters to seize this moment for the benefit of Main Street families and small businesses, opponents of the bill offer this motion to recommit.

But the motion seeks only to distract from the need to reform our regulatory system and reduce unnecessary burdens on the public.

Worse, it seeks to distract from the need for Members of Congress to stand accountable for the regulatory actions committed in its name. I ask my colleagues: Why should any Member of Congress be afraid to stand accountable for the most costly legislative decisions that the government imposes on the American people?

This motion to recommit represents the politics of diversion and division. It takes virtually every major legislative area off the table from the REINS Act. It weakens the country. The politics of courage and accountability is what is needed to build this country up.

I want to commend the gentleman from Indiana (Mr. Young) for sponsoring this legislation. I urge all of my colleagues to support this bill, reject this motion to recommit, and show America that Congress can act for the good of job creators and Main Street Americans who desperately want and need jobs.


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