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Biden Races To Add One Trillion In New Regs As Election Looms



The Biden administration has added a total of $1.2 trillion in costs to the economy in the first several months of 2024 from finalized regulations as the president rushes to protect his agenda ahead of the November election.

The cost of the new regulations is more than double those added in the first three years of Joe Biden’s presidency, which totaled $447.9 billion, despite adding only 187 regulations so far in 2024 compared to the 783 added from 2021 to 2023, according to the American Action Forum’s (AAF) regulation tracker. The uptick in regulatory action by the Biden administration is in an effort to ensure that the new regulations are in place long enough that they cannot be easily revoked in the event that the president does not win reelection, according to a report from George Washington University’s Regulatory Studies Center.

Federal agencies issued 34 final rules in April that have an impact of $200 million or more, breaking the record for the most economically significant rules published in one month since at least the Reagan administration, according to the report. The rush is related to rules around the Congressional Review Act (CRA), which allows Congress to overturn rules from federal agencies within a “lookback period” of 60 working days before the end of a session of Congress — estimated to be somewhere between the end of May and the beginning of August.

The Trump administration issued around 1,340 finalized regulations during his term from 2017 to 2020, including rules deregulating industries, costing $64.7 billion, according to the AAF. The Biden administration has already finalized around 970 regulations costing more than $1.6 trillion.

Some Democrats in Congress have encouraged the administration to implement more regulations ahead of the election. The scope of the regulations ranges from measures encouraging electric vehicle production, forgiving student loans, restricting “junk fees,” and various restrictions designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Trump signed 14 CRA resolutions in the first few months of 2017, repealing various regulations put in place near the end of former President Barack Obama’s second term.

The RealClear Politics average currently has Trump polling ahead of Biden by 1.1%. Trump is also polling ahead in several key swing states, including Nevada, Georgia, Arizona, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

“This calculator disingenuously focuses only on regulatory costs while ignoring regulatory benefits,” a Biden administration official told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “These rules would save Americans more than $1.5 trillion in fuel costs, health benefits maintenance repairs, and more. No business owner would look only at the expenses of running their business and ignore what they earn: what matters is the difference between the two. Similarly, it makes no sense to look only at the costs of regulations, while ignoring their benefits: what matters is making the lives of the American people better, which is what the Biden administrating is fighting for every day.”

Editor’s Note: This article has been updated to include a statement from the Biden administration.

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