Regulatory Reforms and Counter-Reformations

From: The Regulatory Review

Some of President Trump’s deregulatory actions are innovations, others build on his predecessors’ work.

To be sure, the Trump Administration has continued the slow refinement and modernization of cost-benefit analysis. But by and large, the work of OIRA reflects the work of the Reagan Administration, the Clinton Administration, and the rest. The Reagan Administration’s formal codification and extension of practices that had arisen organically from the Nixon Administration onward succeeded in entrenching OIRA as a major institution of governance, and the Trump Administration is simply the latest Administration to maintain its inheritance.

In addition, the Trump Administration echoes the Reagan Administration’s recognition that the modern administrative state, like every other part of our administration, benefits from—indeed, requires—Hamiltonian “energy in the executive.” OIRA’s primary value is not just that it is a unit within the Administration that oversees cost-benefit analyses and interagency review of major regulations. OIRA’s central importance is that this function occurs in the White House.

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