Planet Gore

Employers to Obama: What Regulatory Reform?

This isn’t energy-industry specific, but relevant as even lightly regulated companies are calling the president on his bogus red-tape-cutting claims:

Businesses big and small aren’t buying President Obama’s claim that he’s reducing the burden of costly federal regulations, a major barrier to job growth.

“It’s a mirage,” said Dan Bosch, manager of regulatory policy at the National Federation of Independent Business. “The final rules that are coming out in the last two years are worse.”

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a nationwide tour this summer by former Sen. Evan Bayh, Indiana Democrat, and former Bush White House Chief of Staff Andrew H. Card Jr. to call for “common-sense” regulatory reform. Among the states they will visit are Wisconsin, Georgia and West Virginia, as well as the president’s home base of Illinois.

And House Republicans held events in their districts last week focusing on their “Plan for America’s Job Creators,” featuring calls for lower business taxes and fewer regulations. At a meeting with local business leaders in his district, House Republican Conference Chairman Jeb Hensarling of Texas said firms are facing an “avalanche” of government rules.

“Entrepreneurship is currently at a 17-year low, not because of a lack of capital, but because of a lack of confidence,” Mr. Hensarling said.

In turn, the White House launched a publicity offensive in the past week to counter industry’s belief that the administration is failing to streamline regulations. Cass Sunstein, the president’s regulatory czar, gave a speech on Capitol Hill and wrote an Op-Ed, contending that the first two years of the Obama administration produced fewer regulations than the last two years of the presidency of Republican George W. Bush.

“We are eliminating unnecessary regulatory burdens and tens of millions of hours in red tape,” Mr. Sunstein said.

The rest here.

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