Quantifying the Growth of the Regulatory State

By August 17, 2010Economy, Regulations

House Republican Leader John Boehner sent a letter to President Obama expressing alarm at the expansion of the regulatory state.


It has recently come to our attention that the Administration’s published regulatory agenda includes a total of 191 planned rulemakings, each with an estimated annual cost to our economy of $100 million or more, and that a number of these planned rulemakings may each have an annual economic cost in excess of $1 billion. During a recent job forum conducted through our America Speaking Out initiative, the uncertainty resulting from such rulemakings was cited by private sector job creators as one of the primary impediments to job creation currently facing small businesses.

A widely published AP story last week included the growth of regulations as one of the major points of dispute between the business community and President Obama.

Washington — Labeled anti-business by Republicans and some corporate chiefs, President Barack Obama mounted a campaign to show he wasn’t. But his charm offensive has hit a rocky patch.

Business leaders gripe about burdensome new financial and health care regulations, what they see as unfriendly tax policies and vast government spending. They were put off by Obama’s harsh depiction of “fat cat bankers” and “reckless practices,” a label he applied both to Wall Street and to oil-spill giant BP.

White House aides dispute an anti-business bias, noting that corporate profits are up 65 percent from two years ago. “The stakes are too high for us to be working against each other,” top presidential advisers Rahm Emanuel and Valerie Jarrett wrote to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

It’s not just regulation of  health care and financial services that’s in dispute, of course. Energy and environmental regulations are as disconcerting and disruptive to the economy.

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