POLITICS

Portman to Obama: Follow the law, stop hiding your regulatory agenda

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Joel Gehrke

Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, told President Obama to stop hiding his regulatory agenda in a letter reminding the White House of the legal requirements that they publish their plans.

“For nearly three decades, presidents of both parties have published their plans for new regulations twice a year,” Portman wrote to Obama today. “Now, with the spring plans still missing, the Fall 2012 Regulatory Agenda is also overdue.  In light of this apparent trend, I am writing to inquire whether your Administration has chosen to abandon this tradition of transparency altogether.”

 The Associated Press reported today that “since the election, the Obama administration has quietly reopened the regulations pipeline,” but Portman reminded Obama that two laws and one of his own executive orders requires him to be more public.

“I respectfully urge you to publish the long-overdue Spring 2012 Regulatory Agenda and the now missing Fall 2012 Regulatory Agenda, as past presidents have done and the law requires,” he wrote.

Failure to do so could harm the economy, according to the senator. “[T]he publication of planned regulatory actions that will affect American employers, workers, and consumers is a basic transparency measure,” Portman wrote.  “The semiannual agenda helps the public and regulated parties better understand new rules under development, including their potential compliance costs and effect on small businesses.”

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