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 McConnellBiden says he's open to altering, eliminating filibuster to advance voting rights Pelosi says GOP senators 'voted to aid and abet' voter suppression for blocking revised elections bill Manchin insists he hasn't threatened to leave Democrats MORE (R-Ky.) and Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocratic frustration with Sinema rises Schumer endorses democratic socialist India Walton in Buffalo mayor's race Guns Down America's leader says Biden 'has simply not done enough' on gun control 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 & National Security — Presented by Raytheon Technologies — Biden backtracks on Taiwan Top GOP senators want joint review of Afghan visa process Timken rolls out six-figure ad campaign, hits Fauci 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.