House easily approves review of burdensome regs in 391-28 vote

The House overwhelmingly approved a resolution Friday intended to eliminate burdensome regulations in a 391-28 vote.

All nay votes came from Democrats, while 142 Democrats joined with Republicans to support the resolution, which instructs 10 committees to look at whether federal regulations are impeding economic growth and job creation.

The broad bipartisan vote came despite Democratic criticism of the bill. 

During two days of floor debate, Democrats argued the resolution is redundant because the committees already have the power to do an inventory of regulations deemed burdensome to business. They said it wastes time that could be used to pursue a jobs bill, and could lead to the elimination of needed environmental, financial and other regulations.

But many Democrats also did not want to be seen as voting against a review of regulations that could hurt business and impair job growth.

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Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), for example, voted for the resolution, saying he agreed with it.

Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who criticized Republicans harshly during Thursday's debate, also voted for the bill. 

House Oversight and Government Reform ranking member Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) also said he supports the resolution, although he said it was “unnecessary” since it requires committee work that is already being done.

Democrats first offered a motion to send the bill back to committee with instructions to place a high priority on maintaining standards on safe food, water and toys. That motion failed in a party-line vote.

Republicans used their time to outline various rules they said are hurting U.S. companies. On Friday, Republicans from the Agriculture Committee took issue with rules put place by the Environmental Protection Agency that treat milk spills as a hazardous event because milk contains animal fat, and another rules that require farmers to limit the amount of dust kicked up by their vehicles.


Several Republicans contested the Democrats’ assertion that examining regulations is not a jobs bill. House Rules Committee Chairman David Dreier (R-Calif.) on Thursday mused that his Democratic colleagues “seem to believe that the government creates jobs.”

And on Friday, House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-Minn.) said the country has learned over the last two years that the Democrats' plan of “spending billions and hundreds of billions and trillions of dollars does not in fact put America back to work.”