Chamber: GOP has 'once-in-a-generation opportunity' to pass reg reform

Chamber: GOP has 'once-in-a-generation opportunity' to pass reg reform
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The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is pressuring lawmakers to pass the Regulatory Accountability Act, which would lower compliance costs for businesses.

The Senate has a “once-in-a-generation opportunity” to pass the regulatory reform measure, the nation’s leading business lobby wrote late Monday in a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump urges GOP to fight for him Senate Dems signal they'll support domestic spending package Trump's top picks for Homeland Security chief are ineligible for job: reports MORE (R-Ky.) and Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerTurkey says soldier killed despite cease-fire in Syria Schumer calls for FDA to probe reports of contaminated baby food How Trump and Pelosi went from bad to worse MORE (D-N.Y.).

“The Senate has a unique chance to bring real structural reform to the way agencies adopt the most costly rules,” the Chamber wrote.

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“With both the new presidential administration and the U.S. House of Representatives agreeing on the urgent need for regulatory reform, the Senate is presented with a once-in-a-generation opportunity.”

The Regulatory Accountability Act would require federal agencies to adopt the “least costly” rule that addresses the problem they are trying to fix.

This would make sure “agencies implement congressional intent, not intent of the agency,” the letter said.

“Federal regulations should be narrowly tailored,” the Chamber wrote.

The House passed the measure in January, but it faces an uphill battle in the Senate, where Democrats can filibuster. Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanOvernight Defense — Presented by Boeing — Pence says Turkey agrees to ceasefire | Senators vow to move forward with Turkey sanctions | Mulvaney walks back comments tying Ukraine aid to 2016 probe On The Money: Senate fails to override Trump veto over border emergency | Trump resort to host G-7 next year | Senators to push Turkey sanctions despite ceasefire | McConnell tees up funding votes Senate fails to override Trump veto over emergency declaration MORE (R-Ohio) is expected to introduce the bill in the upper chamber.

It is unclear whether Republicans can garner the 60 votes required to pass it in the Senate. They would need the support of at least eight moderate Democrats who are from red states that President Trump won in the 2016 election. 

The Chamber's letter, signed by 616 business organizations from around the country, could help put pressure on these Democrats.