"It directs agencies to seek public comments on rules, to minimize burdens on the private sector, to simplify and harmonize their regulations, to promote flexibility and freedom of choice, and to make sure that the benefits justify the costs," Sunstein said.
Obama in January also signed a memorandum requiring agencies to "take new steps to reduce regulatory burdens on small business," Sunstein said.
House Republicans are clearly not swayed by the White House effort, in part because they credit House Majority Leader Eric CantorEric CantorRyan seeks to avoid Boehner fate on omnibus GOPers fear trillion-dollar vote is inevitable Insiders dominate year of the outsider MORE (R-Va.) with fist coming up with the idea for regulatory review — in 2009.
Republicans also fear the White House will look only at older regulations, not new ones stemming from last year's healthcare act or the Dodd-Frank financial regulation bill. Laena Fallon, a spokeswoman for Cantor, said Monday that the parallel House effort will ensure that all regulations that have an impact on economic growth will be examined, not just those the White House chooses.
"Hopefully the president will not allow new big-government policies like the healthcare and financial regulatory reform laws to be exempt from this important process, and the House will conduct its own oversight to make sure no stone is left unturned," Fallon told The Hill today.
The office of Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas), who sponsored the resolution that will be taken up later this week, had a similar reaction.
"While the Obama administration's newfound interest in reining in our unwieldy regulatory system is encouraging, it should not prevent Congress from fulfilling its own obligation to the American people to remove unnecessary government burdens that destroy jobs," said Torrie Miller, press secretary for Sessions. "Just last year, the Obama Administration unleashed an unprecedented torrent of 43 new major regulations -- and it is up to this Republican Congress to provide meaningful oversight and review the impact of these regulations on job creation and economic growth."
-- Updated at 3:26 p.m.