Americans spent an estimated $1.8 trillion in 2012 to comply
with federal regulations, reports the Competitive Enterprise
The public policy organization has just released its 20th annual
report, "Ten Thousand Commandments," which describes the cost of
complying with Uncle Sam's rules.
"You have thousands of regulations coming out of the [federal]
agencies. Every year it's about 3,500," says Wayne Crews, vice
president for policy at the CEI.
Congress, meanwhile, passes only a "few dozen" regulations
annually that are signed into law by the president, says Crews.
According to the latest report, $1.8 trillion is more than half
of federal spending, and is greater than the gross domestic product
in Canada and Mexico.
CEI notes the federal government funds itself through taxes and
through borrowing money, and a third way is through regulations -
Crews says he wants Congress to pass the Regulations from the
Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act, or REINS Act. The legislation
would require Congress to approve rules proposed by the executive
branch that have an economic impact of $100 million or more.
"That way, you get Congress back in the driver's seat," Crews
tells OneNewsNow. "Plus, voters have someone they can point to and
The REINS Act passed in the U.S. House of Representatives and
has been introduced in the U.S. Senate by Rand Paul, according to
the senator's website.