The Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act has been reintroduced in 2021 by Kentucky Senator Rand Paul and 24 cosponsors.
The purpose of this Act is to increase accountability for and transparency in the Federal regulatory process. Section 1 of article I of the United States Constitution grants all legislative powers to Congress.
Over time, Congress has excessively delegated its constitutional charge while failing to conduct appropriate oversight and retain accountability for the content of the laws it passes. By requiring a vote in Congress, the REINS Act will result in more carefully drafted and detailed legislation, an improved regulatory process, and a legislative branch that is truly accountable to the American people for the laws
imposed upon them.
In other words–put power back in the people’s hands instead of unelected bureaucrats.
“For too long, an ever-growing federal bureaucracy has piled regulations and red tape on the backs of the American people without any approval by Americans’ elected representatives,” said Dr. Paul. “By making Congress more accountable for the most costly and intrusive federal rules, the REINS Act would give Kentuckians and citizens throughout the country a greater voice in determining whether these major rules are in America’s best interests.”
One of the cosponsors, Utah Senator Mike Lee said, “Unelected bureaucrats in Washington have far too much unaccountable power over the American people. The REINS Act would give Congress the authority to reject any federal government regulation with costs over $100 million, thus giving Americans an important check on federal regulators”.
The bill defines a “major” rule as one that the Office of Management and Budget determines may result in an economic impact of $100 million or greater each year; “a major increase in costs or prices” for American consumers, government agencies, regions, or industries; or “significant adverse effects” on the economy.
Under the REINS Act, once major rules are drafted, they must then be affirmatively approved by both chambers of Congress and then signed by the President, satisfying the bicameralism and presentment requirements of the Constitution. Currently, regulations ultimately take effect unless Congress specifically disapproves.