James Gattuso and Diane Katz detail how the Obama Administration has imposed new regulations costing $46 billion annually, with nearly $11 billion more in one-time implementation costs. That is about five times the cost of regulations imposed during the first three years of President George W. Bush’s administration, but the burden is even higher. The red tape of the past three years helps explain why the economic recovery has been so slow and job creation so anemic.
In January 2011, President Obama himself said, “rules have gotten out of balance” and “have a chilling effect on growth and jobs.” And he’s right. Where the President breaks with reality is his pledge for a get-tough policy on overregulation and a comprehensive review of regulations imposed by Washington. In fact, to hear President Obama tell the story, you would think he’s a champion of slashing red tape and that his Administration has set its sights on slashing overregulation.
Just two months ago, in his 2012 State of the Union address, President Obama claimed that “I’ve approved fewer regulations in the first three years of my presidency than my Republican predecessor did in his.” But looking at the sheer number of regulations doesn’t begin to tell the story. While it’s true that the Obama Administration approved 10,215 regulations in its first three years, just slightly less than Bush’s 10,674, it’s important to look at what those regulations are and their impact on the American people and industry — and how their costs have vastly overshadowed those of the prior administration.