Key Vote YES in the Senate on Resolutions of Disapproval Against Costly Federal Regulations

On behalf of FreedomWorks’ activist community, I urge you to contact your senators and ask them to support resolutions of disapproval against costly regulations promulgated by federal agencies. H.J.Res. 38 and H.J.Res. 41 are aimed at regulations submitted for congressional review by the Department of the Interior and the Securities and Exchange Commission. The resolutions have passed the House of Representatives Wednesday.

The Congressional Review Act (CRA) allows Congress to give no force or effect to federal regulations within 60 legislative days of their submission for review. Since the passage of CRA, more than 120 resolutions of disapproval have been introduced. Unfortunately, only one has passed both chambers of Congress and been signed into law by the president.

In 2015, federal regulations cost nearly $1.9 trillion, according to the Competitive Enterprise Institute, almost $15,000 per household. The constitutional and economic issues that the regulatory state brings were on full display during President Barack Obama’s eight years in office. Congress now has the opportunity to roll back several regulations under the CRA.

  • H.J.Res. 38 – Department of the Interior’s Stream Protection Rule: With an annual estimated cost of $81 million, according to the Department of the Interior’s Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, the Stream Protection Rule is another blow to the coal industry, which was a favorite target of the Obama administration. The National Mining Association estimates that rule will lead to billions of dollars in lost revenues to state and local governments, as well as the loss of between 113,000 and 280,000 jobs.

  • H.J.Res. 41 – Securities and Exchange Commission’s Disclosure of Payments by Resource Extraction Issuers: Promulgated under the authority of the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, or Dodd-Frank, this rule requires resource extraction issuers to include in annual reports the payment of any entity controlled by the regulated business to foreign governments or the United States government "for the purpose of the commercial development of oil, natural gas, or minerals." The Securities and Exchange Commission projects initial compliance costs between $239 million and $700 million and annual compliance costs between $96 million and $591 million.

FreedomWorks will count the votes on these resolutions of disapproval when calculating our Scorecard for 2017 and reserves the right to score any related votes. The scorecard is used to determine eligibility for the FreedomFighter Award, which recognizes Members of the House and Senate who consistently vote to support economic freedom and individual liberty.


Adam Brandon, President and CEO, FreedomWorks