Democrats Abdicate Responsibility with REINS Vote

December 07, 2011

“We commend the work of Rep. Geoff Davis and the Republican leadership for passing this critical reform to restore accountability and constitutional balance to the federal regulatory process,” said AFP VP Policy Phil Kerpen. “This is a major victory for the American people and we urge the Senate to take up and pass this bill as soon possible.”

The House voted 241-184 to pass H.R. 10, the Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act (REINS) Act. Republicans unanimously supported the bill, which requires Congress to vote on economically significant regulations before they can take effect. Democrats overwhelmingly opposed the bill, with 184 voting against it and only four voting for it.

“We applaud the four Democrats who voted for REINS for putting common sense above partisan politics, but the unfortunate takeaway from today’s House floor debate and the vote on the REINS Act is that most Democratic members of Congress believe that Congress should look the other way and allow bureaucrats to make the most important economic decisions without oversight.” Kerpen said.

Democrat after Democrat took to the House floor in opposition, most of them explaining that Congress is incompetent to make the key decisions they were elected to make. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) said regulations are ‘too important’ to be decided by Congress. Gerry Connolly (D-VA) said that Congress voting on major regulations – the exact constitutional process for enacting laws – ‘replaces the rule of law with the rule of the jungle,’ while Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX) said that Congress voting on major regulations will ‘literally shut down government’ and ‘hold the American people hostage.’

“The 184 Democrats who voted against REINS in the House today showed their Democratic Party unworthy of its name, opting to allow unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats to make the most important economic policy decisions instead of taking responsibility as elected officials,” Kerpen said. “Democrats who voted en masse against the REINS Act should reconsider their position. If they won’t, then they should level with the American people by renaming the Democratic Party the Bureaucratic Party, because they no longer believe democratically elected officials should take responsibility for laws and regulations.”

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