Monday, January 30, 2017

Congressional Review Act

President Obama's first two years caused Democrats to lose control of both Houses of Congress for the next six years.

Obama then "legislated from the White House" with his "pen and phone".

The Congressional Review Act (CRA) could allow Republicans to reverse most of the Obama pen and phone executive orders with a simple majority vote .... so not one Democrat vote would be required.

The CRA requires any federal agency proposing a new rule to submit a “report” on it to the House and Senate.

A 60-day clock starts when the rule is published, or when Congress receives the report—whichever comes later.

Many Obama agencies didn’t bother, so there are many Obama Administration rules with no CRA reports (probably most of them).

The Trump Administration could submit those CRA reports now, for rules implemented long ago, and then the Republican-controlled Congress could vote the (old) regulations down.

The CRA definition of a “rule" isn’t limited to those published in the Federal Register.

The CRA also applies to “guidance” that agencies issue.

Challenges could be leveled now against any rule or guidance since 1996, when the CRA was passed.

Once Congress overrides a rule, agencies cannot reissue it in “substantially the same form” unless specifically authorized by future Congressional legislation.

The CRA was to help Congressional legislators rein in Administrations that ignored them.

Obama did that like no other President in American history.

Congress should use the CRA to reverse Obama's abuse of authority— making laws with a pen and phone, bypassing Congress -- a step toward a one-man dictatorship that should have resulted in Obama's impeachment, but I suppose every Republican was afraid of doing the right thing and being called a racist.