Senate nixes Obama-era workplace safety rule

Victoria Sarno Jordan

The Senate voted on Wednesday to roll back an Obama-era safety regulation. 

Senators voted 50-48 to nix the Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) rule extending the amount of time a company can be penalized for failing to report workplace injuries and illnesses to five years. 
Republicans are using the Congressional Review Act to take a hammer to rules instituted under the Obama White House. The law allows them to overturn recently published regulations with a simple majority. 
{mosads}With the House passing legislation overturning the regulation earlier this month, it will now head to President Trump’s desk, where it is expected to be signed. 
Republicans argue that the Labor Department’s rule is another example of the Obama administration overstepping its boundaries. 
“It’s a regulation that purports to look out for workers’ best interests but actually does little to achieve that outcome. The Volks Rule merely empowers Washington bureaucrats and increases paperwork burdens instead,” Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said. 
He added that the move to repeal the law will let companies focus “on actual safety of employees or on more bureaucratic paper pushing.”
But Democrats counter that Republicans are putting special interests above worker safety. 
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) argued that the move to nix the rule was “shameful.”
“The pattern that is emerging is pretty clear. Republicans have no plans to improve the lives of American workers. Quite the opposite. Republicans are increasing the odds that workers will be injured or even killed,” she added.  
Tags Elizabeth Warren Mitch McConnell
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