By Jordan Fabian - 02/22/16 12:59 PM EST
Obama: I don't get 'a kick out of big government'
President Obama on Monday brushed off Republicans who say he’s in love with big government.
“I do not believe in regulation for regulation’s sake, contrary to rumor,” Obama told a gathering of the National Governors Association. “This idea that somehow I get a kick out of big government is just not the case.”
Republicans have chided Obama for years for his penchant to issue sweeping regulations on areas where he disagrees with Congress, including climate change, gun control and immigration.
The president’s use of executive power has been a major point of debate on the 2016 presidential campaign. GOP candidates have pledged to roll back many of his most controversial actions, while Democrats have said they would keep them in place, or, in some cases, expand them.
Obama defended his administration’s record issuing rules and regulations, even though his executive actions to curb carbon emissions from power plants and allow undocumented immigrants to remain in the U.S. have been tied up in court.
“The truth is, if something is working without being involved, we’ve got more than enough to do without getting involved in it,” he said. “We really do. It’s not like I’m waking up every morning thinking, ‘how can I add more work for me.’”
The president said his administration has cut regulations and waste in agencies across the government.
“We don’t get a lot of credit for that, it’s kind of the dog that doesn’t bark,” he said.
And he said the White House has been “more vigorous” in applying cost-benefit analysis on its regulations than any of his predecessors.
“For those of who you think that I’m just a big-government, crazy liberal, we’ve crunched some numbers around here," Obama said. "We take it very seriously.”