House Democrats are urging the Trump administration to refrain from a spate of last-minute rules rolling back health, safety and environmental protections, warning it could complicate the transition process for President-elect Joe Biden and the incoming Congress.
In a letter to Office of Management and Budget Director Russ Vought, House Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., and House Oversight Chair Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., said that “midnight rules” — passed in the lame-duck session — tend to be rushed and implemented without giving Congress sufficient time to review them.
“We are concerned that these ‘midnight rules’ may be rushed through without providing Congress adequate time to review these rules, as required by law,” the lawmakers wrote. “These rules could include significant actions that have the potential to weaken air quality standards, lift protections for endangered species, jeopardize national security, or impose new immigration rules.”
Nadler and Maloney pointed to a 2018 report from the Government Accountability Office, a nonpartisan watchdog, which found that 25% of “economically significant rules” passed during transition periods in 2000, 2008 and 2016 — by the Clinton, Bush and Obama administrations, respectively — did not comply with the procedural requirements of the Congressional Review Act (CRA).
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