Key Vote YES on the REINS Act, H.R. 367

As one of our millions of FreedomWorks members nationwide, I urge you to contact your representative and urge him or her to vote YES on the “Regulations from the Executive In Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act”, H.R. 367.  Introduced by Rep. Todd Young (R-IN) and co-sponsored by 164 of his colleagues, this bill simply requires that executive agency regulations that will have a major economic impact be subject to a vote in Congress.  

Every year, the executive branch issues thousands of new rules and regulations. Those rules that impose at least $100 million of annual compliance cost are considered “major rules.” In 2010, federal agencies issued 95 major rules. The REINS would respect the checks and balances carefully established in the Constitution by requiring Congress to approve such rules. Agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) would no longer be allowed to pass economically-devastating regulations without being put to a congressional vote.

As our Founding Fathers understood, it is dangerous for any branch of government to have unchecked power. In Federal 51, James Madison acknowledged that checks and balances are “necessary to control the abuses of government.” In article 1, section 7 of the Constitution, the process of creating a new law is outlined and clearly gives that power to the legislative branch. Today, unelected bureaucrats in the executive branch repeatedly disregard these limits by enacting new rules without the approval of Congress.

A CNN poll found that the majority of Americans believe that the federal government has become so large that it imposes a threat against citizens’ rights. We cannot allow the American people to be potentially harmed by regulations that have not been subjected to the proper constitutional lawmaking process—a vote by their elected representatives. The REINS Act would restore accountability and protect citizens’ rights by giving elected officials a voice in all major regulations issued. It is unjustified that unelected bureaucrats can impose substantial costs on individuals and businesses without approval from the people’s representatives.

I urge you to call your representative and ask him or her to vote YES on the REINS Act, H.R. 367. We may count their vote as a KEY VOTE when calculating FreedomWorks’ Economic Freedom Scorecard for 2013. The Scorecard is used to determine eligibility for the FreedomFighter Award, which recognizes Members of Congress who consistently vote to support economic freedom.


Matt Kibbe

President and CEO